2017 Nairobi Diary: News from World Under 18 Championships

The World Under 18 Championship began today, July 12, in Nairobi, Kenya. Here are some news updates from EME News. Watch for our updates from Justin Lagat!

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NAIROBI (KEN): More than 800 athletes from 131 countries, as well as an athlete refugee team (ART) will compete at the 2017 World U18 Championships in Nairobi which begin on 12 July. The official pre-event press conference was attended by dignitaries including IAAF president Sebastian Coe. "These championships are an extraordinary opportunity to watch talent and champions of the future. It is through these championships that Usain Bolt and Allyson Felix and other greats have emerged. There's no reason why we won't see more jewels of the future throughout this week. Being here is not a sacrifice; it is a labour of love to be witnessing athletics in a nation that has made such an extraordinary contribution to the history of our sport," he said.

NAIROBI (KEN): Kenyan First Lady Margaret Kenyatta made a final inspection of the Moi International Sports Centre on Monday which will stage the World U18 Championships in Nairobi, informs Capital FM. She inspected facilities in the main competition arena including the tartan tracks and warm-up areas and the media centre before heading to the accreditation centre for registration. The organisers expect to host over 5000 visitors this week and the event is predicted to generate 2.5 billion Kenyan shillings into the local economy.

NAIROBI (KEN): Jamaica's Kevona Davis will be a big favourite in both the 100m and 200m with times this year of 11.24 and 22.97. The Caribbean nation has a great record at junior-level championships and others in the team who are favourite are Tyreke Wilson (10.34 in the 100m) and Britany Anderson (13.04 in the 100m hurdles). Cuba also has a fine tradition among juniors; Marisleisys Duarthe (65.44m world record in the javelin), Maikel Vidal (7.85m long jump), Jordan Diaz (16.66m - fourth all-time in the triple). Potential distance stars in action include Kenya's Edward Zakayo (7:53.8 for 3000m), Leonard Bett (5:28.42 in the steeplechase) and Mercy Chepkurui (6:27.6 in the girls' steeplechase). After his world record in the 400m hurdles of 48.84 this year, South Africa's Zazini Sokwakhana seems a class apart.

NAIROBI (KEN): The World U18 Championships will be streamed live in more than 160 countries via the IAAF's Facebook and YouTube channels.

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