NAIROBI, May 14 (Xinhua) -- Kenya selected a strong 12-member swimming team to the Africa Youth Championships in Algiers, Algeria in July.
The country has for long relied on track and field athletes to provide the medals in international competition, but wants to wean off the reliance. National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) Chairman Paul Tergat said sports like swimming have the potential to win medals at the continental championships.
"Hopefully soon we will see swimming, rugby, volleyball and boxing join athletics in medal haul at international competitions for Kenya," Tergat said on Monday in Nairobi.
Swimming head coach Fakry Mansoor hopes to end their medal jinx in Africa Youth Games knowing that the event will be used as a continental qualifier for the Olympic Youth Games in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Oct. 1-6.
The Africa Youth Games will be in Algiers from July 17-27 and is eligible to athletes under 17 years.
Leading the Kenyan team will be Maria Brunlehner, who debut for her country at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Australia in April.
Brunlehner is currently Kenya's top ranked female swimmer with 758 points by the global swimming federation FINA. She will contest the 50/100m freestyle, 200m individual medley and 50m breast stroke.
"Maria (Brunlehner) has some experience, which we hope it will help her win medals in Algiers. We believe the experience she gained from the Commonwealth Games will be an added advantage," said coach Mansoor.