By Omulo Okoth
Kenya has accepted, albeit with a chin in hand, the decision by global athletics chiefs to disqualify the 4x400m relay team after an infringement during the race on Thursday.
Team Kenya Media Liaison, Peter Angwenyi, said they will not contest the decision because the Kenyan athlete, Vincent Mumo, indeed infringed on the South African runner causing a collision.
“We reviewed the tape last night and we totally agree with authorities that it was an infringement by our athlete. We have no defence,” said
Angwenyi at the Olympic Village, yesterday. Kenya was cruising to third position after the first lap by Boniface Mweresa, who handed to Mumo. Mumo went for some 50 metres then crashed into South Africa’s Ofentse Mogawane as he was crossing from the outside to inside lanes. Both fell and, while Mumo jogged to the finish line, the South African painfully groaned by the track side until the race ended.
“We have no complains even after the IAAF reinstated South Africa to the semi finals. It was a painful day for Kenya Team who had expected to do well in the race especially with David Rudisha joining in the quartet in the finals in place of Boniface Mucheru’s (third leg runner).
Initial report said South Africa and Kenya were disqualified. The race was won by Trinidad and Tobago with Great Britain in second place and Cuba third.
Earlier, Olympic champion Pamela Jelimo and Janeth Jepkosgei made it to the 800m final. Cherono Koech was not as lucky as she finished fifth in the third and last semi-final.
Jelimo led from beginning to finish and won in 1:59.42 ahead of Russia’s Ekaterina Poistogova’s 1:59.45.
Jepkosgei was third in 1:58.26 behind Caster Semenya of South Africa (1:57.67) and Russia’s Elena Arzhakova (1:58.13).
“I ran a tactical race again knowing what is coming ahead. I am still strong and hope for the best,” said Jelimo.
Janeth said she did not use all her energy because of the final.