Uhuru confident of hosting mandate for 2025 Championships
President Uhuru Kenyatta is confident Kenya will win their bid of hosting the 2025 World Athletics Championships after a successful World Under 20 championships that ended at the Kasarani Stadium on Sunday.
The President while talking to senior editors in an interview on Monday night, expressed his optimism that the World Athletics would grant the country a chance to host the major event and make Kenya the first country in Africa to host the global showpiece.
“We took six years to prepare for the World Under 20 Athletics Championships which was very successful and above many expectations as it ended with colourful celebrations on Sunday.
This was just a brief stop and our main target is hosting the World Championships in 2025, which I’m confident we will be awarded the hosting rights,” said President Kenyatta.
Kenya’s fate for hosting the global championships will be known in February during the World Athletics congress meeting, the body’s Chief Executive Jon Ridgeon said during a press conference at Kasarani on Sunday just before the closing ceremony.
During the opening ceremony of the junior championships last week, World Athletics president Sebastien Coe talked very positively of the levels of organisations of the World Under 20 Championships and just fell short of commenting about the chances of the country getting the 2025 hosting rights.
“I am Happy to be in Kenya again, this is a major sporting country. I managed to meet President Uhuru Kenyatta in Mombasa as he feted the country’s Tokyo Olympics medallists and he expressed a lot of government commitment in supporting athletics in the country,” Coe said.
The showpiece in Nairobi earned their place in the history books with four world U20 records, 15 championship records, 11 area U20 records, 68 national U20 records and 10 national senior records.
The championships that ended with a flourish on Sunday saw the Jamaican women and the South African men broke world U20 records in the 4x100m relays, adding to the two world U20 records set by France’s Sasha Zhoya in the men’s 110m hurdles.
Hosts Kenya topped the medal table with eight gold, one silver and seven bronze medals, ahead of Finland (4, 1, 0), Nigeria (4, 0, 3), Ethiopia (3, 7, 2) and Jamaica (3, 6, 2).
From the 116 countries that competed in Nairobi, 18 teams won gold medals, 35 won medals and 63 had top eight finishes.