Omanyala-inspired Kenyan sprinters make 200m semis

Dan Kiviasi Asamba

Kenya's Dan Kiviasi Asamba reacts after his heat of the men's 200m round 1 athletics event at the Alexander Stadium, in Birmingham on day seven of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, central England, on August 4, 2022.
 

Photo credit: Glyn Kirk | AFP

What you need to know:

  • The Kenyan sprinters, inspired by Ferdinand Omanyala's victory in the men's 100m on Wednesday night, stormed to the semi-finals of the men’s 200m in athletics at the ongoing Commonwealth Games.
  • Kiviasi timed 20.76 seconds to reign supreme in heat seven, beating Alexander Nasir Taib from Malaysia to second place in 21.19 as both claimed the automatic place in the semis.

In Birmingham

Dan Kiviasi won his heat to guide Mike Mokamba and Hesbon Ochieng through to the semi-finals of the men's 200m due for Friday at the Alexander Stadium, Birmingham.

The Kenyan sprinters, inspired by Ferdinand Omanyala's victory in the men's 100m on Wednesday night, stormed to the semi-finals of the men’s 200m in athletics at the ongoing Commonwealth Games.

Kiviasi timed 20.76 seconds to reign supreme in heat seven, beating Alexander Nasir Taib from Malaysia to second place in 21.19 as both claimed the automatic place in the semis.

“The weather was beautiful and not humid with the cheering crowd making it excellent,” said Kiviasi, adding that having three Kenyans in the semi-finals is a great achievement.

“It’s our prayer that we all qualify for the final and see what happens next. Time won’t matter but a medal,” said Kiviasi.

Mokamba finished second in 20.82 sec in heat three to automatically qualify for the semi-finals. Briton Zharnel Hughes won the heat in 20.30 sec.

"I reached the semi-finals in the last two Commonwealth Games. I want to go a notch higher," said Mokamba, adding that Omanyala’s effect is performing wonders in the team.

"He has done it and we can also do it...Omanyala’s victory completely changed the mood at Team Kenya village. He is a great inspiration," said Mokamba.

Despite finishing fourth in heat five, Ochieng, who clocked 21.30 seconds, had done enough to qualify among the best losers. Joseph Paul Amoah won the heat in 20.58.

Meanwhile, Kenya’s Millicent Ndoro eased through to the women’s 200m semi-finals at the ongoing Commonwealth Games at Alexander Stadium.

Ndoro clocked 24.03 seconds as Olympic 200m silver medallist Christine Mboma from Namibia won the heat in 23.20 sec.

A knee injury locked out the national 200m champion and record holder Maximilla Imali from running in the third heat that went to Jamaican Natalliah Whyte in 23.61 sec.

Hima Das from India claimed heat two in 23.42 with heat four going to Favour Ofili from Nigeria in 22.71 sec.

Going for a double after winning the 100m title on Wednesday, Elaine Thompson-Herah won heat five in 22.80 sec with Natasha McDonald going for heat six in  23.45.

The semi-finals are scheduled for Friday.

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