After surrendering the World title, Olympics Javelin silver medalist Julius “Youtube” Yego is seeking to redeem himself by defending his Commonwealth Games crown in Gold Coast, Australia in 2018.
Yego who failed to defend the World title in London said he was undergoing treatment for the injury he sustained at the Worlds in the United Kingdom (UK) in August with his eyes trained at defending the Commonwealth Games crown.
“At the moment am recovering and now in rehabilitation and hoping that I will be wel soon and start training for the Commonwealth Games,” he said.
Yego won the javelin at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, in Glasgow, Scotland beating the reigning Olympic champion, Keshorn Walcott of Trinidad and Tobago, with a distance of 83.87 m.
Although Yego, captain of the Kenyan athletics team in Glasgow, is the first from his nation to win Commonwealth javelin gold, he is not the first from the African country to claim a medal, as John Mayaka won bronze with a throw of 77.56m in Christchurch in 1974.
Yego, who is a self-taught javelin thrower having learnt his trade by watching videos on YouTube, admitted he had almost dropped out of the Commonwealth Games competition after injuring his groin at the warm-up track but said competing in the final was too important to miss.
His winning throw came in the third round, after which he decided to pass his remaining attempts and hope that mark would be enough to get the gold.
Yego was speaking during a football clinic by German World Cup winning captain Lothar Matthaus at the Mathare Youth Sports Association (MYSA).
Yego said he was impressed by StarTimes bringing a star role model to mentor upcoming footballers and asked the pay per view tv to bring others from different sporting disciplines instead of concentrating only on football.
He called on Athletics Kenya (AK) to diversify into sprints and field events to boost Kenya’s chances of enhanced medal haul.
“We are slowly now losing our stranglehold on middle and long distances and now we need to take serious other areas we have not been doing well to replace the middle and long distances medals that we are now losing,” he said.
Yego cited his javelin gold medal and that by Nicholas Bett in the men’s 400m hurdles during the World Championships in Beijing, China in 2015 on top of the medals won by the middle and long distance was able to hand Kenya the global title.
He urged the national and county government to enhance youth development programmes by starting centres like MYSA to nurture upcoming talent.