Defending champions Augustine Choge and Caroline Chepkoech will be out to retain their titles when the Kenya Police Cross Country championships go down tomorrow at Ngong racecourse.Choge faces a litmus test in former Police champion and two-time world cross country champion Geoffrey Kamworor as well as Emmanuel Bett, who finished third last year, James Kitum and Bethwell Birgen.Bett has been in fine form in the Athletics Kenya cross country circuit winning the Olkalou, Sotik and Tuskys Wareng in Eldoret.The mixed relays will see reigning world 1500m champion Elijah Manangoi go head to head with former world and Olympic champion Asbel Kiprop.Chepkoech will be back to defend the senior women’s 10km race but should not expect an easy ride with former wold 800m champion Eunice Sum, former world 3000m steeplechase champion Hyving Kiyeng, former Commonwealth Youth Games 1500m champion Stacey Ndiwa, Beatrice Chepkoech and Janet Kisa also also interested in the title.National Police Service coach Isaac Kirwa said he expects the law enforcers to form the bulk Team Kenya to the Africa Cross Country Championships in Algeria in March.“We have a good crop of athletes in our team. Last year, we had the majority of athletes in the team to the World Cross Country Championships in Uganda and we hope it will be the same this year,” said Kirwa.He said the course will be tough and challenging to the participants as they have made alterations to the route that was used last year.“The conditions are expected to be hot and we have made some minor changes to the course to make it tough for the competitors in all the categories,” added Kirwa.He added that the athletes will be using the championships as part of their preparations for the Commonwealth Games trials next months. Kirwa revealed that preparations for the event are almost complete and he expects a big turnout“We expect a huge turnout from the various units and maybe we will have surprise winners on Saturday,” he observed.Meanwhile, world 5,000m champion Hellen Obiri will be seeking to defend her Kenya Defence Forces Cross Country title at the Moi Air Base, Nairobi today.The KDF Corporal won last year’s 36th edition of the event having timed 32 minutes and 49.08 seconds holding off Jemima Sumgong to the silver position in a time of 33:16.9.But in the absence of Sumgong (who is serving a four-year ban), Obiri, the 2017 female Athlete of the Year who has also been nominated for the SOYA Award will face competition from Senior Private Joyciline Jepkosgei, who finished third (33:29.08) at the Thika Garrison last year.This will be Obiri’s second race within one week, having clocked 19:28.00 to finish fourth at the 61st edition of Campaccio race in SAN Giorgio Su Legnano, Italy on January 6.With the men’s defending champion Emmanuel Kipsang from Mtongwe yet to confirm his participation, World Marathon champion Geoffrey Kirui will lead the men’s title contest.Corporal Steven Arita of Nairobi is the other notable cross country regular who is expected to spice up the title contest as runners seek slots in the Defence Forces team to the national cross country championships and eventually a chance to represent the country in Algeria. Kabras have bolstered their playing unit by signing Uganda Sevens star Pius Ogena for the reminder of the season.Coach Charles Cadovillis said the capture of Ogena will be a good addition to the side as they seek to reclaim the league crown they last won in 2016. “He will bring some good competition for our current centres, who have been massive. With us playing Quins, Nondies, Impala and Homeboyz in that order, it will really test our strength both physically and mentally, something we are working on with the boys,” said Cadovillis.The sugarmillers have also signed Brian Bango from Strathmore Leos and Quins duo of Kelly Akengo and Alfred Odawa. Cadovillis said having depth in the squad will be key. “It’s a long season and with many players at your disposal is always an advantage. Having many players competing for positions helps us keep the them fresh and ready for the playoffs,” added Cadovillis.The club have also parted ways with Levy Ochieng and Francis Mutuku, who join Nondies.Elsewhere, the Kenya Rugby Union has expanded their Judicial Panel following the addition of six officers. They include Ian Amagola, Oliver Khabure, George Mbaye, Daniel Ndaba, Aggrey Chabeda and Mwendwa Chuma who join Willy Ombisi, Bernard Itebete, Edwin Obuya and Mukite Musangi in an expanded panel of 10.KRU fixtures administrator Martin Ngunjiri said: “With an expanded panel, we will have a wider reach across all levels of league competitions countrywide and will be able to resolve disputes in an expedited manner.”“We will additionally release weekly rotas indicating the Judicial Officers on duty on each match day,” he added. Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) can now go ahead and hold their Annual General Meeting tomorrow after the High Court dismissed a suit that had sought to block them from doing so.Justice Joseph Sergon, in a ruling yesterday said Hockey Kenya Federation, who had sought orders against the union were unregistered entity hence lack the legal authority to approach court.The Judge declined to rule in favour of HKF, saying blocking the union from conducting their affairs would seriously inconvenience them as opposed to the federation if the order for injunction is granted. “I am persuaded by the union’s argument that in the circumstances the applicant lacks the requisite locus standi to pursue the remedy for injunction,” the judge said.HKF had sued Sports Cabinet Secretary, Sports Registrar and the Attorney General, saying KHU were illegal entity as they had not reviewed their constitution nor conducted elections within a year as required by law. Through their chairman, George Jalang’o, the federation sought to restrain the union from conducting the AGM scheduled for tomorrow, pending the hearing and determination of the suit. HKF further wanted the court to compel the union to produce copies of annual Audited Financial Report from 2013 to date.Also sought was a list of registered office bearers and a copy of the constitution. Their argument was, if the AGM is allowed to go on as scheduled, it would prejudice the outcome of another ruling pending before a different court. The group also argued that the Sports Act allows club members to participate in the election of the union.The union had termed the case as frivolous, vexatious, and incompetent and an abuse of the court process. They told the court that issues that were being pursued by the group had been resolved by the sports dispute Tribunal. “Since the HKF are not members, they have no locus or legal basis to purport to interfere with our affairs by demanding to be provided with audit report,” the union argued. The court was also told that the union had expended a lot of money in preparation of their AGM and it will cost them untold damages and loss if the order sought are granted.In ruling, justice Sergon said the federation failed to establish a proper case, and show court the irreparable damage it will suffer if the order is denied.The judge noted that delegates from Mombasa, Eldoret and Kisumu and other counties have already been paid to attend the AGM to be held at Parklands Sports Club.The dispute between the two arose after HKF filed a petition before Sports Dispute Tribunal in which they sought an order of declaration that KHU are non-existent in law, they are unlawful, unfit and lack capacity to run any hockey affairs in Kenya. They complained that the union did not reviewtheir constitution nor conducted their elections within a year.They also accused the union of failing to comply with the provision of the new Sports Act thus they cease to exist and therefore are illegal entity. Its application was, however, dismissed prompting the current case. Rally aces have much to celebrate as the 2017 Kenya National Rally Championship embarks on the season finale at this weekend’s Fly540 KMSC Rally.Two-time Group ‘S’ rally champion Jasmeet Chana will take on outgoing 2WD champion Eric Bengi in a Mitsubishi/Subaru shootout.Minesh Rathod and Issa Amwari in R4 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 10 will also renew their rivalry. Rathod hopes to cement second overall position in the KNRC Division 2 in the absence of Tash Tundo, who will skip the rally for personal reasons.The 2017 KNRC has been to Eldoret, the ARC Safari Rally in Rift Valley, Nakuru last December and Kajiado. Nanyuki Rally wasn’t held this year due to farm invasions which compelled Nanyuki Rally Group to declare it a force majure on safety grounds.Jasmeet Chana aka Iceman will be fighting to secure second position on the 2017 KNRC Division 1 log in Kajiado and Lisa Farm this weekend. In an interview Chana said: “We are eagerly waiting for the last event of the 2017 to see if we can fight for second position in our division. “Preps are on course despite having had a lot of issues in Nakuru from a broken exhaust manifold to loss of 5th gear and engine wiring gremlins. “My sibling navigator Ravi has done a good job the whole season and kept me on my tracks so we expect more from him going into 2018. Rallying is a hobby and I always try to enjoy it to the fullest.”The weekend’s rally which counts towards KNRC 8 will start in Kajiado and end in Lisa Farm area in Makueni county near Mombasa/Nairobi highway.The event initially slated for November was pushed to January due to torrential rains pounding the route course then.
15 Oct, 2018  0  Comments
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