Maureen Chebet and Priscilla Akello on the podium, moments after recieving their medals and the national flags as the ISF Anthem played aloud in Caen city, France (Credit: David Isabirye)

Uganda won seven medals at the 19th edition of the ISF Gymnasiade Games hosted in France in Normandy.

All the seven medals were in one sport; athletics at these U-18 secondary school games that attracted as many as 63 countries in 20 sports disciplines.

There were two gold medals, one silver and four bronze medals at the Stade Helitas, Caen city.

The first of these seven medals came from Victor Cherotich in the 3000m race.

Victor Cherotich happily shows off his bronze medal in the 1500m event at the 2022 ISF Championship in Normandy, France (Credit: David Isabirye)

Cherotich who won two medals also added the 1500m bronze medal to his personal collection.

Loice Chepkwemoi clinched gold in the 2000m steeple chase race and Maureen Chebet deservedly earned gold in the 800m race.

During the same 800m girls’ final, Priscilla Akello came third to claim bronze.

USSSA president Patrick Okanya and Loice Chekwemoi celebrate moments after the gold in 2000m steeple chase (Credit: David Isabirye)

Uganda returned to the podium with another bronze by Dolphine Chelimo in the 2000m steeple chase boys under rainy and windy weather conditions.

The final medal fetch was bronze for the boys’ highly competitive medley long relay under harsh weather confines.

Dolphine Chelimo with his bronze medal at Stade Helitas in Caen, France (Credit: David Isabirye)
Dolphine Chelimo gestures moments after crossing the finishing line in France (Credit: David Isabirye)

The four-man relay team had Fred Ambayo, Rajab Limuuto Tiimu, Dominic Naido Krop and Raymond Omara.

Ambayo opened the way with 200m, Rajab ran 400m, Krop followed with 600m and Omara ended the race with 800m.

Greece, Brazil and Uganda on the podium at the prize giving ceremony of the Long Medley Relay in Caen, France (Credit: David Isabirye)

Brazil won this fast medley long relay with gold and Greece with silver.

“We had a great strategy from the start and it worked to perfection. We really needed this medal. I thank the entire team members and the organizers as well as our sponsors. On behalf of the team, I am overwhelmed and we take important lessons from these games” Krop spoke moments after the relay.

Some of the Uganda athlete pose for a group photo moments after their brave performance in Caen, France (Credit: David Isabirye)

Uganda only fielded participants in five sports disciplines of athletics, swimming, Table Tennis, Badminton and Basketball (3X3).

Olympian swimmer Kirabo Namutebi came close to a medal with near finish in the 50m free style race.

Namutebi finished fourth in the final but the biggest positive was improving her personal best as she set a new national record with 26:12:1 over 50m freestyle.

The Table Tennis boys and girls’ teams ended 11th and 13th respectively.

For the girls’ basketball team (3X3), they were 8th and the boys complete in the 14th position.

Uganda Secondary Schools Sports Association (USSSA) president Patrick Okanya was left impressed by the performances of the team generally with showers of praise for the athletics team.

“We thank God for this performance. The preparations did not let us down. We thank the athletes, their parents, coaches and the Government of Uganda who fully sponsored this trip. We go back home with our heads held up.” Okanya noted.

The host cities of these games were Caen Normandie, Deauville, Granville Normandie, Le Harve, Caen Lamer Normandie Communaute Urbaine, Ville de Montivilliers, Ville de Pont Audemer, Rouen, Val de Reuil and La Harvre Seine Metropole.

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

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