As the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris draw near, attention turns to a group of Kenyan athletes who have completed their doping suspensions and are once again eligible to compete on the global stage.
Despite past controversies surrounding doping violations, these athletes are now cleared to participate in international events, including the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.
One such athlete is Wilson Kipsang, a former world marathon record holder, who faced a four-year ban starting from Jan. 10, 2020, due to whereabouts failures and tampering.
Kipsang, 41, recently expressing eagerness to return to competition.
However, with the provisional squad for the Olympic marathon team to Paris already being named by Athletics Kenya, it is unlikely that we will see Kipsang compete at the Olympic marathon. However, this does not rule him out of other major events, such as World Marathon Majors.
Elijah Manangoi, a former world champion, has also expressed the possibility that he will attempt a comeback this year.
Manangoi faced a two-year ban for anti-doping violations related to whereabouts rules.
Another name on the list is that of Asbel Kiprop, a three-time world champion, who continues to advocate for his innocence more than five years after testing positive for erythropoietin (EPO).
Kiprop’s four-year suspension was backdated to February 3, 2018, but he adamantly insists that he was framed and did not commit any doping offense.
Another athlete making a return to international competition is Mark Otieno, a multi-time national 100m champion who tested positive for methasterone.
Otieno faced a two-year ban and has since resumed training and competition.
The eligibility of these Kenyan athletes to compete in the Olympic Games demonstrates the complexities and challenges associated with doping-related issues in the world of running.