Silver medallist Rotich gets hero’s welcome in Kericho
Recently crowned Tokyo Olympics Games 800m silver medallist Ferguson Rotich yesterday received a befitting reception in Kericho County as he returned from the Summer Games.
Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony, his deputy Lily Ng’ok, Kericho County Commissioner Kamau Karungo, members of the Kericho County Assembly plus general athletics fans in the area were there to welcome their hero at the county headquarters.
Rotich who hails from the county came second to clinch silver while his compatriot Emanuel Korir won the 800m race to continue Kenya’s dominance over the distance even in the absence of World Record holder David Rudisha.
Korir clocked 1:45.06 while Rotich crossed the finishing line in a time of 1:45.23.
When word went round that the track star will be in the town, the locals and some of the leaders thronged the county headquarters to receive him.
Governor Chepkwony said the county was proud of the athlete for not only flying Kenya’s flag high but the county’s too.
“We are very much proud of Rotich for bringing silver medal to our country and especially Kericho county because it will be a big motivation to many aspiring athletes in Kericho.
So we’re happy to receive him back home after a successful outings in the Tokyo Olympics Games,” said Chepkwony.
He said his administration is committed to supporting various sports disciplines as well as assisting children to exploit their talents, arguing that the sector was a major industry.
“We are ready to support all sports including football and track and field events.
We are doing so by upgrading playing grounds and availing facilities for our upcoming athletes to train as they start their sport careers,” he added.
The silver medallist on his part said he had prepared well enough despite the challenges brought about by Covid-19 pandemic.
Rotich said he had targeted gold at Tokyo but unfortunately could not win it and was happy his compatriot won the race.
He disclosed that he is now focusing on Diamond League races and various upcoming major races across the globe. He says he is still upbeat of conquering the world of athletics.
“ I am not about to hang boots in athletics and I’m not even taking a break, I am still training hard ahead of the coming events across the world and I am confident of doing well”, he told People Sport.
Meanwhile the athlete has been appointed the Goodwill Ambassador for the fight against Drugs abuse in Kericho County.
The appointment was by Kericho Governor, when he received the middle-distance runner in his office.
The athlete will be the champion and voice against the growing menace of substance abuse among the youth in the county.
Governor also announced the immediate renaming of Kericho Green Stadium to Wilson Kiprugut Chumo stadium, in honour of the legendary athlete who won Kenya the first Olympic medal in 1964 in Tokyo, Japan.