Uganda’s double Commonwealth Games gold medallist Joshua Kiprui Cheptegei Joshua Cheptegei is set to miss out on the rescheduled Diamond League season that starts next month, August in Monaco, France due to the travel ban in Uganda.
Cheptegei was invited together with another world champion Halimah Nakaayi to take part in the athletic event. However, with the continued closure of Entebbe Airport due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the duo might be unable to make their way to France on time to represent the country.
“For the moment it remains a challenge. We’ve reached out to authorities for help. It’s time the government did something for these exceptional athletes to facilitate their travel,” Cheptegei’s manager Jurrie van der Velden said.
William Blick, the head of the Uganda Olympic Committee said they have engaged Foreign Affairs Ministry to see how the duo can make its way to France.
Cheptegei and Nakaayi are still hopeful that they make it to France and the lockdown has not affected their fitness levels as the duo has been actively undergoing all sorts of necessary duels to keep in shape.
Last year, Cheptegei became the first Ugandan to win a Diamond League final when he came top of the 5000m title race in Zurich, Switzerland.
On February 16, Cheptegei broke the 5km World Record at the Monaco Run and he is plotting another record when the 5000m race comes in under three weeks’ time.