Kenyan Ferdinand Omanyala became the second Kenyan runner ever to win the 100M African title after edging past South African Akani Simbine in the 2022 African Athletics Championships. Omanyala clocked an impressive 9.927 seconds and would have made a new championship record had the judges not ruled for a higher wind support of +4.5 instead of the standard +2.5. Omanyala beat South African Akani Simbine to clinch his first championship title with Simbine clocking 9.930 seconds to win Silver. South African Henricho Bruintjies came in third clocking 10.01 seconds to win Bronze.
Omanyala started the race with a slow take-off and fell behind. He, however, dug deep and edged past Simbine on the line to clinch his first 100M African championship title. As a result, Ferdinand Omanyala is now the first Kenyan to win the African championship title in 32 years. The only other Kenyan runner to win the title was Joseph Gikonyo who won both 100M and 200M African titles back in the 1990 African Athletics Championships in Cairo, Egypt.
Ferdinand Omanyala’s Impressive Time
Omanyala’s time was nothing short of impressive and mirrored Namibian Frankie Friedricks’ 9.93 seconds win, with a +3.5 wind-assisted performance, back in 2002. Omanyala is slowly shaping up to be the next global force in the 100M race and will also be competing for the 200M on Saturday. His dynamism and quick adaptability mean that he has the power to quickly ramp up his speed and inject some power into his run when he most needs it. Omanyala’s Africa Championships win comes after his record 9.77 seconds sprint in the World Athletics Continental Tour in Nairobi.
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Kenya’s Performance in the 2022 African Athletics Championships
Other Kenyan runners also did well in the 2022 African Athletics Championships with Beatrice Chebet winning the Women’s 5000M race and her counterpart, Caroline Nyaga, coming in third. South African Caster Semenya came in at sixth in the Women’s 5000M. Winny Chebet won the Women’s 1500M, as Purity Chepkirui came in second to win Silver. In the 400x4M relay, the Kenyan team of Jarinter Mawia, Veronica Mutua, William Rayan, and Collins Omae came in third. Cumulatively, Kenya bagged 3 Gold, 1 Silver, and 3 Bronze, a total of seven medals on day two.