ABUJA, Nigeria, Aug 5 – Kenya edged out South Africa to finish top of the African Athletics Championship medals table after a five-day tournament blasted as “tedious” during its troubled build-up.
Kenya finished with 11 gold medals, six silver and two bronze with South Africa on nine gold, 13 silver and eight bronze.
Nigeria, the hosts of the championships staged in the southern city of Asaba, were third with nine gold, five silver and five bronze.
The 52-team showpiece event was not without some hiccups -– from the delayed arrival of some countries to complaints of sub-standard facilities.
However, Ifeanyi Okowa, the governor of oil-rich Delta, said he was pleased that after the initial challenges, the championship lived up to its billing.
“We had only nine, 10 months to prepare for this championship and so it was a bit tedious at the start,” Okowa admitted.
“But we were committed to deliver a great event and we did and we are all happy.”
Kenya dominated in the middle and long distances while the South Africans lined up top stars such as Olympic and world champion Caster Semenya who won the 400m and 800m.
The next edition of the championships will be staged in Algeria in 2020.