|David Rudisha leading the race at the London 2012 Olympics|
80,000 spectators at the London Olympic Stadium and millions of others watching TV screens at various places across the world witnessed a spectacular 800m race. The start gun went off. Seeming to take advantage of his long strides, David Rudisha immediately stepped ahead of his competitors and effortlessly continued to open a gap crossing the first lap in 49 seconds. Within 1 minute and 40 seconds, it was over! An Olympic Gold medal had been won, and a world record smashed. The significance of what just happened, to me, appeared too much to have all happened too quickly. Like everyone else, I agree that it was a result of hard training and progressive runs of many years. But, for now, I am only thinking about what this victory means for Rudisha, Kenya, his community, and his coach, among others.
First, Rudisha's performance brought glory to his nation and saved it from what would have been a worse scenario at the Olympics. Apart from the men's 3000m steeplechase, the results of the other events where Kenyans had a lot of hopes to win gold medals had been below their expectations. These included the women's marathon, the men's and women's 10000m, women's 3000m steeplechase and the most disappointing of them all, the men's 1500m. Rudisha's performance brought back some morale to the Kenyan team and helped put Kenya's name where it rightfully belongs as far as the middle distance running is concerned.