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No Trials For Athletes Who Skip Doping Seminar, AK Warns

Athletics Kenya President, Lt. Gen (Rtd) Jackson Tuwei (centre) flanked by Treasurer David Miano (left) and Vice-president Paul Mutwii at a previous press briefing at their Riadha House headquarters in Nairobi. PHOTO/File
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NAIROBI, Kenya- Athletes who will not attend the Athletics Kenya/Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya workshop in Eldoret on Wednesday risk being locked out of the Trials for the London 2017 IAAF World Championships in July.

The warning was delivered by the federation on Tuesday when it served notice for elite athletes eying to represent Kenya at the August biennial track and field showpiece to attend the meeting aimed at educating them on doping.

In a statement, AK said the seminar has been organised as part of initiatives aimed at cleaning the country’s sport that came under unwanted international spotlight once again in March when women marathon Olympic champion, Jemimah Jelagat Sumgong tested positive for banned blood booster, EPO.

“As you may be aware, Athletics Kenya has been under the IAAF monitoring list since 2016. It is our hope to get out of the watch list and part of the requirement we have to fulfill is to organize an anti-doping education program especially on elite athletes who are probable to represent Kenya in the IAAF World Championships.

“The meeting will also include training the athletes on use of the ADAMS systems, to enable them update their whereabouts at all times so that no Kenyan gets a ban for whereabouts failures and missed tests,” AK said on Tuesday.

“It is mandatory for invited athletes to attend the meeting failure of which may lead to their non-participation in the Trials for the World Championships,” the federation cautioned.

The workshop is slated to start at 9am local time (+3GMT) at the Pearl Hotel in Eldoret and follows another held in January 16 at the self-styled ‘University of Champions’.

Doping menace

Sumgong’s B-Sample is yet to confirm the adverse findings of the A-Sample with her management, Rosa Associati moving to ban three of her training partners as well as their coach who is the husband of the Olympic champion, Noah Talam.

Paris Marathon champion Purity Rionoripo, Tokyo Marathon winner Sarah Chepchirchir and 2015 Worlds silver winner and Visiline Jepkesho were red carded by the Rosas.

“We are all very concerned about the issue. We have currently decided to suspend both Talam and all the athletes in Jemima’s group.

“Since we do not have a clear picture, we cannot express ourselves safely. As we have done in the previous cases, we have suspended the whole group, asking everyone for maximum cooperation in providing us or our local collaborators with any piece of information they are aware of,” the Rosas told respected American website, when quizzed on the latest doping scandal affecting the stable.

AK has slated Rionoripo as a reserve in the women’s marathon team for London 2017.

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