Team Kenya captain David Saruni’s participation in the IAAF World Under 18 Championships ended in heart break last evening after the 17-year-old was disqualified by competition rule 63.3 on lane infringement.
Saruni was drawn in the third heat of the boys’ 400m hurdles which he finished first but his joy was short-lived after track officials adjudged him to have violated the lanes rule. The 400m hurdles did not, however, end in gloom for Kenya as the country’s second participant Moitalel Naadokila advanced to the finals from heat one.
Naadokila was drawn in lane two of the first heat alongside race favourite Rovane Williams of Jamaica and the Kenyan reacted poorly to the gun, leaving the blocks second from last.
Mary Moraa stormed into the finals of the girls 400m after registering a personal best time of 53.88 for a second place finish in the semi-finals. Staring in lane three of the second semis that also had Jamaican Shaquena Foote and German Laura Kaufman, Moraa lagged in the opening 100m, pulled close into the final straight seizing the lead and only losing to Barbora Malikova of the Czech Republic in a tight photo finish.
“I am not very impressed with my race today even though I have qualified. I was not tactical at all but will run better in the finals,” said Moraa. Kenya’s other participant in the one-lap race Sharon Jebet failed to qualify after burning out in the last 200m to finish fifth in 55.34. Kenyan boys in the 400m Kelvin Sawe and David Sanayek fared worse as they both failed to clinch final berths.