BY Gilbert Wandera
Where will you be on Thursday and Saturday? Nyayo Stadium will literally be on fire as Kenya’s athletics world beaters will converge there in search of an Olympic ticket!
Clear your diary for the two days of “Mini- Olympics” for London Olympic champions in-waiting will all be there.
Top names will line up in all categories when the Olympic trials.
In total, athletes will be attempting to qualify from four categories and all of them have who is who in the world of athletics.
The men 800m race has world champion David Rudisha, who will run on home soil for the first time this season after a great performance in events he has so far run elsewhere. Here there is a strong field that also includes former World champion Alfred Kirwa, Boaz Lalang, Abraham Rotich and Jackson Kivuva.
The women two-lap event will see a renewal of the rivalry between Olympic champion Pamela Jelimo and World silver medalist Janeth Jepkosgei.
Jelimo won her 400m race last week where she was building speed for the Olympic trials and looks set to qualify for the London games in a year where she has seen a major revival of her career after a three year absence dodged by injury.
The Olympic champion admitted it will not be easy picking the ticket to London given the new runners coming through like Eunice Sum and Cherono Koech.
Interest will also be in the men’s 1,500m event where World and Olympic champion Asbel Kiprop will fight it out with a strong field that also includes Silas Kiplagat, Nixon Chepseba, Daniel Kipchirchir Komen and Augutine Choge.
A total of 14 athletes will line-up to fight it out for the three places available in the 1,500m team. Olympic champion Nancy Langat will lead the onslaught for the women’s slot in the 1,500m event.
She will fight it out with Janeth Jepkosgei who will be attempting a double after competing in the 800m. Other big names here are; Hellen Obiri who won the national championships last weekend, Mercy Cherono, Viola Kibiwott as well as Faith Chepng’etich.