Favourites dominate the men’s 1500m as Kenya Trials begin

Jul 14, 2011

The men’s 1500m races at the national championships lived up to its billing with all the top contenders strongly qualifying for the semifinals on Thursday as Kenyan athletes began their chase for the coveted tickets to the World Athletics championships in Daegu,South Korea.

“It’s difficult for anyone to predict whether he/she will make it to this year’s Kenyan team to Daegu,” the reining Commonwealth Champion, Silas Kiplagat confessed after crossing the line behind Augustine Kipchoge,winner of the first heat in the men’s 1500m in 3:44.5 at the Nyayo national stadium.

Collins Cheboi posted winning time of 3:40.9 was the fastest of the day with Olympic Champion Asbel Kiprop comfortably winning heat in Kiprop in 3:44.4. 2011 Shanghai Diamond League winner, Nixon Chepseba topped his heat 3:44.7.

“I have a lot of pressure looking at the list of athletes who are running 1500. My only hope is that I make it to the world event,but if I don’t, then I will be eying All Africa Games ,” said Kiprop who had to come from behind to beat Kenyan borne-Qatari national Nicholas Kemboi who posted 4:44.6.

Olympic 1500m champion Nancy Langat qualified second behind Hellen Obiri who stopped the timer at 4:17.6 in their respective heat. Lagat posted 4:17.8 while Nancy Chepkemoi came third in 4:18.2 to qualify for the finals. But their time was much slower than Irene Jelagat’s 4:14.7 in the first heat.Viola Jelagat Kibiwot placed second in 4:15.0 while Tabitha Wamboi came third.

Isaiah Koech and Vincent Yator won their respective qualifying rounds of the men’s 5000m in 13:29.3 and 13:33.8. Former World champion Eliud Kipchoge booked his final slot finishing third behind Yator in 13:34.2 and second placed Thomas Longosiwa13:34.1.

The three day championship which ends on Saturday will be used to select Kenya teams to World championships in August as well as the All-Africa Games in Maputo, Mozambique in September.

 

Elvince Joshua

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