Last week Kenya’s team to the IAAF World championships was chosen and the National Athletics Championships trials. Also selected was the team to represent Kenya at the All Africa games in September this year.
This episode is about the 5000m and 10,000m events. These two races feature possibly the most intense; definitely most underappreciated nation rivalries in the world of sport. Kenya and Ethiopia between them own the bulk of the world champions at these distances over the past two decades and the Daegu World Championships will be dominated by races from these two countries. Anyway, Kenya currently holds both Championships in the women’s races whilst Ethiopia has the men’s world Champion at the 10k? So who will be carrying Kenya’s hopes this time around?
Kenya has not had much joy in this event largely down to the joint efforts of a certain Kenenisa Bekele. Not to mention a certain Bernard Lagat. Kenya’s entries in this event are: Isaiah Kiplangat, Thomas Longosiwa, Eliud Kipchoge. Being the last Kenyan to win this title I’m gonna tip Eliud Kipchoge as the most likely guy to do the needful for Kenya.
Women’s Champion Vivian Cheruiyot will be joined by the 10K champion Linet Masai. Logically then these are my tips for gold, though the young Mercy Cherono, I reckon, is fully capable of, how do you say… pulling a fast one.
Like in the men’s 5k, Kenya has not had much joy over the last few world championships largely down to the deadly finishing prowess of our neighbours to the north. This year’s trials saw Peter Kirui, Wilson Kiprop and Martin Mathathi came through and it will down to the three of them to come together and beat the Ethiopians on the day. My tip for gold is Wilson Kiprop.
Like in the 5k, Kenya comes to Daegu represented by the reigning world champion, this time in the form of Linet Masai. Despite that fact, this blogger is going to go a bit left field to suggest that Sally Kipyego, the woman who actually won Kenya’s national championships, to win the day for Kenya.
In the next edition of this series of posts I take a look at the marathons. Now despite ruling the city marathons with an iron fist (38 victories in 42 starts in 2010 if I remember correctly) Kenya’s medal tally at World Championships is…sparse. More in the next episode so till next time…