Kamworor set for World Cross ticket battle at Uhuru Gardens

By robert kibet
Feb 12, 2015
  • Geoffrey Kamworor at the World half marathon in 2014.(Photo:File)

With just about a month to the World Cross Country Championships, Kenyan athletes are leaving nothing to chance as they focus on booking tickets to Guiyang, China.

Having missed last year’s World Cross as he opted to concentrate on the World half marathon, 20 year-old Geoffrey Kamworor of Kenya Police is exuding confidence rating high his chances of making team Kenya on Saturday.

“My season last year was quite good. Despite missing the national team, I won the World Half Marathon in Copenhagen in additional to other races,” Kamworor said in Eldoret. Kamworor, the 2011 world junior cross-country champion who showed impressive form winning the Kenya Police Service cross country championships for the third consecutive year, will be facing off his rivals this Saturday, at the Uhuru garden.

“I am well prepared, I am in form. Let my close challengers be warned,” said Kamworor, whose personal best time in half marathon is 58.56 from the RAK half marathon, 2013.

Peter Emase Lemuya , winner of the recently held North Rift regional cross country, and 20-year old William Sitonik who won the South Rift regional cross will not be resting on their laurels in the countdown to the Saturday event.

“I am in good shape.Winning the recent Discovery cross-country followed by the north rift regional cross-country was enough to test my form,” Emase, the Iten-based Run Fast club runner said.

Lemuya, with the Madrid half marathon course record title under his belt singled out Kamworor as a big favourite, and is looking to exploit any available chance for his shot at a ticket to China.

Kamworor,training mates in Kaptagat include renowned marathoners Eliud Kipchoge, Emmanuel Mutai, Uganda’s Stephen Kiprotich and steeplechaser Brimin Kipruto under the Global camp. Also keen to make impact in the Kenyan team is Japan based 22-year old William Sitonik, who trains Silibwet, Bomet.

First four runners qualify

He won the recent South Rift regional cross in Kericho, outclassing Isaac Lang’at before beating 500m Olympian Isaiah Koech (chairman) at the second edition of the Mau Egerton cross country. Sitonik, who holds the IAAF World Youth Championships 300m race, graduated to senior category in 2013, which cost him a slot to the Kenya team for two seasons.

“I missed the two seasons, 2013 and 2014, but after testing my capability in recent races, I am ready to face out with the strong contingent in Nairobi, Saturday,” he said.

In the senior women category, 20-year old Caroline Chepkoech from Bomet could spring a surprise.

She ran her first senior women cross race at the Egerton University.

The World Cross country in Guiyang, China will be the 41st edition that is expected to attract over 80 countries in the one-day vent on March 28.

The first four athletes across the line will book automatic tickets with Athletics Kenya coaches picking the other two in each of the two junior and senior categories.