I dedicate this silver medal to President Museveni who supported me while people laughed at my situation— Joshua Cheptegei

How times change! Joshua Cheptegei who won silver in the 10,000m at the World Championships in London has dedicated the medal to President Yoweri Museveni. 

In a tweet, Cheptegei wrote “I dedicate a prestigious World 10000m Silver Medal to His Excellency President Kaguta Museveni for Medical support after Kololo tragedy”. 

Back in March, the Ugandan 20-year-old hit the highest point imaginable for an athlete, leading a global championship on home turf, having built an almost unassailable advantage in the men’s race at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Kampala. With one lap to run, Cheptegei had a 12-second advantage over Kenya’s Geoffrey Kamworor, with bedlam breaking out in the packed stands as Ugandans heralded their champion-in-waiting. Even with one kilometre to run, he was slowing but still held a seven-second lead.

But then it all went wrong, fatigue taking a vice-like grip of the youngster’s body, his stride eventually shortening to a drunken stutter over the final half mile. He crossed the line delirious and dejected in 30th place, having lost almost two minutes to his rivals in the final kilometre.