Athletics Athletics

Commonwealth flame set for Kenya tour


JEBET-LANGATNAIROBI, Kenya, January 9 – The Queens Baton will arrive in Nairobi on Sunday where President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to officially flag off its relay in Kenya.

The Commonwealth Games equivalent of the Olympics Torch, will then tour Karura Forest in the outskirts of Nairobi on Monday.

Here, several schools including those with pupils with disability will be given the opportunity to view the baton and run with it during its journey through the forest.

The baton kicked-off its African tour when it touched down in Freetown, Sierra Leone, where it was received by Sharad Rao, the veteran Kenyan lawyer.

“It is indeed an honour that the Legal Adviser to the Commonwealth Games Federation, Rao, was chosen to receive the Baton when it arrived in Africa.

“He is the longest standing and most respected member of the Commonwealth Games Federation. I take over the baton from Sharad and will travel through to Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania,” National Olympics Committee- Kenya, chairman Kipchoge Keino, said on Thursday.

After Freetown, the baton travelled to Ghana where it was received by the Vice President, then on to Abuja where it was received by the President of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan.

The Baton was flagged off by the Queen on October 19 and will travel through all countries and territories of the Commonwealth over 288 days and covering 190,000km before concluding its journey at the opening of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow on July 23.

It contains a message from the Queen which she will read out at the opening of the Games.

At the last Commonwealth Games in Delhi, Kenya posted her best ever performance when she won 12 gold, 11 silver and nine bronze medals.

Jason Dunford became the first gold medallist outside athletics when he won the 50m butterfly final with boxer Julius Gathiuru, who scooped bronze, the only other podium finisher not competing in track or field.

Nancy Jebet Langat became the first Kenyan female to scoop at track double when she won the women 1500m and 800m titles.