Endurance pays off for Aprot

By ronnie evans
Jun 10, 2017
  • Running in cross county helped Alice Aprot in training techniques. (SNA. File Photo)

World Cross Country silver medallist Alice Aprot cited endurance garnered from the gruesome course as a key component for her triumph in the women's 10,000m of the National Athletics Championship at Nyayo National Stadium on Friday.

The competition now in its second day saw race favorite Aprot who represents Kenya Prison control the tempo from the go as she clocked 31:50.5. She led a group of seven athletes after the first six laps.

“I did not train as regularly as I expected but I managed to step up today. The death of my father had an effect on me and I was not sure if I could defend the title. Running in cross county really helped me in my training techniques,” she said.

She wants to steady her ship with the national trials on the horizon.

Aprot was part of the history defining moment that saw Team Kenya clinch the first six slots in the World Cross Country Championship in Uganda. She took over the race with five laps to go and never looked back.

Kenya Police’s Pascalia Jepkorir was a distant second in 32:10.6 while Kenya Defence Forces’ Joseline Jepkosgei was third in 32:47.0.

Meanwhile, there was no upset for Olympic medalists and favourites Asbel Kiprop and Margaret Nyairera as they both eased to the finals in their respective disciplines.

Kiprop had no trouble as he won his 1,500m semi-final in 3:44.2. Nyairera slowed down at the end of the 800m to settle for second behind Emily Cherotich as she was safely through in 2:04.2.

“It is good to come back here and test myself again. In 2015, I ran the 800 metres and won so I will give my best to win the final tomorrow because it boost me heading into a busy season for me,” Kiprop said.

Cherotich from Kenya Police won the race in 2:03.7 to secure a finals berth.

In the other semi-final, Eglay Nalianya stormed the final in 2:04.9 with Sylvia Chesebe also qualifying after finishing second in 2:05.3.

In the women’s 1500m, Kenya Police dominated the field with Beatrice Chepkoech, who won gold at the World Cross Country Championship qualifying for the final after winning her semi-final race in 4:17.4.

Compatriot Judith Kiyeng had the fastest time in the other race in 4:16.9.

With a galaxy of stars including Olympic 3000m s/c champion Conseslus Kipruto and 5000m women's silver medalist Hellen Obiri and javelin star Julius Yego who were away in the Diamond League, the competition has been depleted.

This will open doors for other athletes to stake their claim now that only merit will determine team selection.

Focus now shifts to the climax of the event which is set for Saturday. On offer will be an opportunity to secure places and times for the National trials slated for June 23-24 where the team that will represent Kenya in the World Athletics Championships is to be determined.