Omanyala racing against time for world championships after late visa

The Kenyan sprinter, who is on entry list for the 100m event, initially announced that he would not take part because of a delay in getting a visa.

FILE PHOTO: Kenya’s Ferdinand Omanyala during the national trials for the World Championships and the Commonwealth Games at the Kasarani stadium in Nairobi on June 25.

FILE PHOTO: Kenya’s Ferdinand Omanyala during the national trials for the World Championships and the Commonwealth Games at the Kasarani stadium in Nairobi on June 25. | Photo Credit: Yasuyoshi Chiba

The Kenyan sprinter, who is on entry list for the 100m event, initially announced that he would not take part because of a delay in getting a visa.

Africa's fastest man Ferdinand Omanyala faced a race against time to compete at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon on Friday after the Kenyan sprinter received his visa to travel to the United States on Thursday.

Omanyala, who is on the entry list for the 100 metres event, initially announced that he would not take part because of a delay in getting a visa.

A spokesperson for Omanyala said the Kenyan sprinter, who is in Nairobi, received his visa less than 24 hours before the start of the World Championships. His flight tickets are yet to be booked.

The 100m event is part of the morning session, which begins at 0905 local time (21:35 IST) on Friday.

The spokesperson said the delay in getting the visa was likely due to the significant backlog of cases resulting from closures due to COVID-19.

Reuters has contacted Athletics Kenya for comment.

Omanyala set the African men's 100 metres record after clocking a time of 9.77 seconds at the Kip Keino Classic meeting in Nairobi in September 2021.

The 26-year-old won the African 100m title last month and was the first Kenyan to qualify for the Olympic 100m semi-finals in Tokyo last year.

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