If Asbel Kiprop is to be believed, then the Olympics 1,500m champion has some work to do before the Games in London next month.
For Kiprop ran a tactically bad race saturday, almost losing in the final trials that saw him finish third behind the winner, Commonwealth champion Silas Kiplagat and Nixon Chepseba.
Ezekiel Kemboi does a jig at the Olympic trials
“I found myself in a box and these people could not move. By the time I broke from the box, I had to fight to finish in the top three. But I will rectify that before the Games and there is no cause for alarm,” Kiprop said after the race.
Chepseba started in front with Vincent Mutai following. After the first lap, Kiplagat pushed and briefly led, but Chepseba was again in front. At the bell, Caleb Mwangangi Ndiku shot to the front, but Chepseba was at it again with Kiplagat following.
With the huge crowd almost writing off Kiprop, who was fifth by the 200m bend, he produced a last gap burst which saw him overtake Ndiku and Mutai by the home stretch to finish third in 3:38.30. Kiplagat won in 3:37.60 and Chepseba was second in 3:38.00.
It was the usual suspects who dominated in the 3,000m SC, save for Commonwealth and African champion Richard Mateelong, and 2004 Olympics bronze medallist, Paul Kipsiele Koech, who were upset.
Brimin Kipruto won the race with world champion Ezekiel Kemboi in second place and Abel Kiprop Mutai third.
It was Hilary Yego who led for the first few laps as Kipsiele followed with Kipruto in the middle of the pack and Kemboi far behind.
The race went on more or less on the same pattern until the bell when Kipsiele took over the lead with Mateelong, Kemboi and Kipruto breathing on his shoulders.
With the crowd on the edge of their chairs, Kipruto took off with 300m to finish as Kemboi followed. Kipsiele almost crawled to the finish, holding his stomach, which he said had an upset.