By Edward Tumusiime
The Uganda Athletics Federation (UAF) has finally selected star athlete Stephen Kiprotich on the marathon team for the Tokyo Summer Olympics.
According to the UAF Publicity Secretary a Technical Commission meeting convened last week in Kampala selected three men who included 2012 London Olympic gold medalist.
He will be making his third appearance in the Olympics where he won gold at the London Summer Olympics in 2012 and finished 14th in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2016.
He makes history by joining Benjamin Kiplagat as athletes that have represented Uganda at three straight Olympics. Felix Chemonges, Uganda’s Marathon record holder with a time of 2:05:12, and Fred Musobo who clocked 2:06:56 in Daegu, are the other two who made it to the three man squad that will represent Uganda in the Olympics marathon this year.
This has come after nine years since winning gold at the 2012 London Olympics.
Kiprotich whose best qualifying time was 2:08:31 set in 2019, but going by current form, has the second best time of 2:09:04 set last month at the NN Mission Marathon in Enschede, Netherlands.
According to Mawerere, the women’s marathon team will have Juliet Chekwel who ran 2:23:13 in the Zurich Marathon on February 2, 2020 and Immaculate Chemutai who clocked 2:29:09 during the Xiamen Marathon on April 11, 2021.
Uganda is expected to at least take 23 track and field athletes, a number which will be the biggest in recent Olympics, as there were 17 at the last Games in Rio de Janeiro, and 11 in London 2012.