By Norman Katende
in Moncton, Canada
THE fact that Ugandan World Junior Athletics Championships medallist Annet Negesa has no trainer nor a well documented training programme touched many coaches and managers attending the event. Many are betting on her becoming another Maria Mutola in the 800m event.
The athlete from Igangaâ€™s King of Kings secondary school, who most times does not even get adequate diet, defied odds not only to improve her time by over two seconds with a new national record, but to also beat other seasoned athletes to bronze in her first global track competition.
The time of 2:02.27 is two seconds short of the 2:00.88 national (senior) record set by Edith Nakiyingi over two decades ago.
â€œWhat I basically use is endurance which I acquire when I get time for high altitude training but is always not more than two weeks. In fact the endurance I have now is a result of the World Cross Country training early this year. But I have no specific training programme,â€ said the athlete, who has never done any speed work training.
â€œSometimes, I talk to coaches when I come for the national trials and I pick advice but there is generally nothing like instructions for me.â€
Coaches, most of them from European countries are interested in helping her get programmes and modern training facilities to improve her skills. They are also ready to assist her get more international exposure, with the help of some IAAF officials.
The move might also benefit other athletes in the country as they are also interested in investing in camps.
â€œWe will get in touch with your federation (UAAF) and see how we can help,â€ said one of the managers. Global Sports Communication playerâ€™s representative Jurrie Van Der Velden has also promised to get the student athlete into more races.
â€œWe shall try our level best to put her in camp after she finishes her examinations. What she needs is a full time coach and more international races,â€ added Velden, who also watched the junior championships here.