Doping may threaten the future of Kenya at the next Olympics unless the country forces itself to realize that the only way for them to remove the athletes using this drug is to implement credible systems, according to veteran Kenya-based coach Brother O?Connell in a report from Reuters.
O?Connell is currently training 800m world record holder David Rudisha, and has coached more than 30 world champions and five Olympic gold medals in his 40 years of stay in a small village in western Kenya?s Rift Valley that 8,000 feet above sea level, Iten.
?If Kenya wants to really move into the Olympics with a clear conscience and with global credibility, then ? better testing and monitoring of our athletes has to be put in place immediately,? O?Connell said in an interview with Reuters.
An international doping scandal and a number of failed tests by Kenyan athletes have been surfacing, making O?Connell worry that the elite Kenyan runner that topped at the world championships in Beijing last August with a whopping seven gold medals may be in the midst of destroying their reputation. ?If this scenario is going to drag on until Rio, then of course (a cloud) is going to hang over Rio as well.?
A German documentary previously reported the alleged doping problem in 2012 but Athletics Kenya ?dismissed the claims as efforts to destabilize it ahead of the London Olympics,? according to Reuters. O?Connell then stated that AK was too late and sluggish in responding to the alleged claims.
?When this documentary came out, we should have taken it a lot more seriously and delved into it to nip it in the bud,? he said. ?That?s when (Kenya) started to latch on to the idea that his needs to be tackled,? O?Connell added. ?She was the first real elite athlete to set people back on their heels.?
Since then, more than 30 Kenyans are estimated to have drug tests since 2012 and AK is still stuck to the same line, denying that its athletes had a doping problem, posted by Reuters. ?That would be a huge blow to the morale and what?s happening on the ground in terms of investment and progress and what the athletes do for this country,? O?Connell added.
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