Ferdinand Omanyala. Photo courtesy of Twitter.
by Meshack Keicha,
Head of the African Office
Boxscore: NAIROBI, Kenya -23. September 2021 – Kenya is now in uncharted waters thanks to the country’s sprint sensation, Ferdinand Omanyala, who broke the African sprint record of 9.84 set by Akani Simbine in Nairobi last week in a time of 9.77, and the eighth fastest became man in the history of the 100M sprint.
Omanyala achieved the feat after finishing second behind Trayvor Bromell in a high-profile field that met in Nairobi for the Athletics Continental Tour Gold Series.
Omanyala ran in front of home fans and did not disappoint when he took Kenya straight to the cloud to rewrite African sprint history and single-handedly pull Kenya onto the global sprint stage.
Kenya has always been known as a strong athletics nation on the global stage, but not in the sprints. The short races were uncharted territory for Kenya despite their dominance in the long and medium distance races.
This is no longer the case thanks to Omanyala who made all the headlines in East Africa and around the world.
Track and field analysts across the country have mentioned Omanyala’s achievements as a game changer in track and field in Kenya as it is a big message to the young aspiring athletes that not only should they venture into the endurance run but try the sprints as well.
Omanyala was born on January 2, 1996 in Nairobi. He has specialized in sprints since his early life but stepped into the limelight in 2019 when he set a new national record of 1/10.
He reappeared this year during the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, made it to the semi-finals and set a new national record at 10:00 a.m.
After the breathtaking race in Nairobi, Omanyala said he was proud of what he had achieved.
Kenya has made a name for itself in the track and field world through long and middle distance, although it is believed that the country is only endowed with massive talent in all track and field events if the country can seriously invest in developing the talent.
In the recent past, however, the country has also had successes in other athletics events, such as the javelin, where the famous YouTube man Julius Yego made a name for himself by winning a World Cup gold. The country also had its first representative in the high jump at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics earlier this year.