Kephas Kasten in worst-four finish
The yawning gap between Malawi’s runners and their continental counterparts manifested itself at Saturday’s African Cross- Country Championship in Yaounde, Cameroon.
During the continental race, Lilongwe-based long-distance athlete, Kephas Kasten, finished on position 42 out of 46 competitors.
Kasten, who was Malawi’s sole representative at the event, even failed to match his previous time that compelled Athletics Association of Malawi (AAM) to select him for the trip.
While competing at the national cross-country championship in Mzuzu last month, Kasten came out tops having clocked 30 minutes and 35 seconds, but at the continental event, he ran the 10-kilometre race in 33 minutes and 34 seconds.
AAM general secretary, Frank Chitembeya, attributed the poor performance to the athlete’s late arrival in Cameroon.
Chitembeya said Kasten, having left the country on Thursday, arrived in Yaounde on Friday night.
“So he did not have enough time to pick himself up. It all goes back to our failure to find money for his air ticket in time. But we are happy that he managed to finish the race because not everyone who started, reached the finishing line,” Chitembeya claimed.
The association’s president, Godfrey Phiri, said though the entire country expected better results, he personally believed that the odds were against Kasten.
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