ATHLETICS: Kangogo and Aprot ready to defend Prisons titles

World 1500m silver medalist Timothy Cheruiyot and two-time World Under-20 steeplechase champion Celliphine Chespol are among star attractions at the Prisons Cross Country Championships set for Prisons Staff Training College, Ruiru, on Saturday.

Prisons moved the race from its traditional venue at Uhuru Gardens to Prisons Staff Training College where correctional department will select their team to the national trials/IAAF Permit meeting scheduled for Eldoret Sports Club on February 23.

Chespol, the world under-20 3000m steeplechase record holder and second-placed last year,  targets her prisons maiden title against defending champion and Africa 10000m silver medalist Alice Aprot, who guns for a fourth crown.

Aprot, 25, is yet to rediscover her form this season having lost in Athletics Kenya meetings in Ol-kalau and Kapsokwony respectively.  

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“I am not 100 per cent but I will be happy to defend my title on Saturday and a fourth victory will be great achievement,” said Aprot.

Other names set for the meeting includes world under-18 champion Jackline Wambui, Nancy Nzisa, Jane Mwikali, 2015  Paris Marathon winner Visiline Jepkesho and Jane Murage among others.

Cheruiyot, a fastest runner over 1500m at the moment, will line up in mix relays having competed in 10km race at the AK Kisii meeting earlier this month.

“It’s always great to run for my prison team, on Saturday I will in action mix relays and I’m looking forward to form Team Prisons to national cum trials” said Cheruiyot who was promoted to Corporal last year.

Defending Champion Cornelius Kangogo, John Mwangangi, a former Africa cross country champion, Mangata Ndiwa, Africa cross country bronze medalist Charles Yosei, 2007 world championships marathon champion Luke Kibet, will contest in men’s 10km race.

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Deputy Commissioner General Kenya Prisons and the Kenya Prisons Service Athletics chairman Benjamin Njoga said they are certain to pick a strong team to the national trials.

“We have been improving over the years and soon we will be matching our previous performances, watch this space. Our regional commanders and heads of various units will present teams,” said Njoga. Principal Secretary, State Department for Correctional Services Zeinab Hussein will be chief guest.

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Timothy CheruiyotCelliphine ChespolPrisons Cross Country Championships