Up-and-coming Kenyan athletes secure Olympic scholarships

Olympic Games

Some of the Up-and-coming Kenyan athletes who have secured Olympic scholarships ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Photo credit: Pool | NOC-K

What you need to know:

  • Kioni noted that the pool of six women and five women secured the best training program and competitions in and outside the country for the next three years.   
  • Other female beneficiaries are Commonwealth Games flyweight bronze medallist Christine Ongare (boxing), Josette Njeri (triathlon), Nancy Akinyi (cycling) and Sharon Wakoli (taekwondo).

Shooter Priscilla Wangui and rising tennis sensation Angela Okutoyi are among 11 sportsmen and women set to benefit from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Solidarity scholarships worth Sh27 million.

National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOC-K) second deputy president, Waithaka Kioni disclosed Wednesday that the funding will help athletes drawn from 11 disciplines prepare for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

Kioni noted that the pool of six women and five women secured the best training program and competitions in and outside the country for the next three years.   

Other female beneficiaries are Commonwealth Games flyweight bronze medallist Christine Ongare (boxing), Josette Njeri (triathlon), Nancy Akinyi (cycling) and Sharon Wakoli (taekwondo).

Male beneficiaries include 016 Africa javelin throw bronze medallist Alex Kiprotich, rower Samuel Muturi, swimmer Danilo Rosafio, wrestler Mahabila Mathayo and Brian Mutua.

“It’s our dream to have Kenya win medals from all the disciplines either at the Olympics or Commonwealth Games,” said Kioni.

“This is part of our ambitious plan to lift the standards of all the sports in the country.”

However, Kioni, who was accompanied by NOC-K secretary general Francis Mutuku and executive committee members Shoaib Vayani and Parvi Rawal, advised the beneficiaries to use the funds well.

“Personal discipline will be paramount since we shall monitor your progress and performance,” warned Kiioni, adding that they didn’t earn the scholarship on a silver platter.

“You have proved it with good results in your respective disciplines and this is just to take your game to the next level,” explained Kioni, noting that ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, 11 athletes benefited from a similar scholarship program worth Sh16 million.

“I am ecstatic to say the least. No words can describe how I am feeling now,” said Wangui, who represented Kenya at the World Shooting Championships last year in India and World Cup in March this year in Egypt.

“This scholarship will help bridge the gaps in my training in terms of personal shooting equipment and training camps in preparation ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympics,” said Wangui of Kenya Police Service.

"This definitely marks the turning point in my javelin sport. It will enable me to train in Finland where I have always longed to go," said Kiprotich from the Kenya Defence Forces.

Njeri, a nursing student at the University of Nairobi, said the scholarship will enable her to attend high profile championships so as to improve her world ranking.

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