RWANDA’S lone representative at the Under-17 World Athletics Championships James Sugira starts his campaign for a silverware when the 3000m heat stages get underway this morning in Donetsk, Ukraine.
The 17-year-old, a Form three student at Groupe Scolaire Kamonyi is expected to face stiff competition from Kenyan Vedic Kipkoech and Alexander Mutiso Munyao who are among the athletes lined up for the event.
Sugira who has no international experience earned qualification for the World youth championship after clocking 8:40 to beat the required requirement time by seven seconds.
Rwanda Athletics Federation’s (RAF) Secretary General Johnson Rukundo said recently that they don’t expect Sugira to perform miracles in Ukraine since it’s his first major international competition but they have hopes in the youngester in staging a good show.
“It would be a tremendous performance from him if he wins a medal but no one is putting him under any sort of pressure to go there and perform wonders. He just has to do his best and qualify for next year’s Juniors Olympics to be held in Ireland,” said Rukundo.
This is an elementary competition in track and field, which is eligible for athletes who are 17 years or younger. It has been held biennially ever since its debut in 1999 in Bydgoszcz, Poland. Kenya and U.S. have dominated the event exchanging leads at will. In Lille, France two years ago, USA edged out Kenya clinching 16 medals - six gold, four silver and six bronze.
Kenya was content with 14 medals - five gold, five silver and four bronze. Jamaica and Bahamas followed with China fifth claiming seven medals - two gold, four silver and one bronze.Follow https://twitter.com/BonnieMugabe