Abraham Kibiwott held off India’s Avinash Sable at the line to win the men’s 3,000m steeplechase gold medal yesterday after Jackline Chepkoech had dominated the corresponding women’s race on Friday night at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games.
Kibiwott’s victory ensured Kenya won the title for the ninth consecutive time. Kenya has won this title since 1974 with the exception of 1986 when they boycotted the games.
Kibiwott’s win was the third gold for Kenya at the Games with Ferdinand Omanyala (100m) and Chepkoech (3,000m steeplechase) having won gold in their events.
The Kenyan however had to hold off a strong challenge from Sable to win in 8:11.15 with the immediate former world Under-20 champion Amos Serem bagging the bronze medal with 2016 Olympic champion Conseslus Kipruto finishing sixth in 8:34.98.
Sable took home silver in a Personal Best time of 8:11.20, the first medal for India in the event.
“I am happy to finally win gold after I won silver in 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia,” Kibiwott who trains in Mosoriot said.
“I had to increase pace in the closing stages to ensure the Indian didn’t win the gold medal, I’m glad my energy paid off.”
Former world champion Timothy Cheruiyot settled for silver, in a close contest against Australian Oliver Hoare who won the gold medal in the men’s 1,500m.
Cheruiyot went shoulder to shoulder with Hoare, who ran from the outside lane and dipped at the line ahead of the Kenyan to win gold in Games Record time of 3:30.12.
Cheruiyot, who missed a medal at the World Championships, timed 3:30.21 while world champion Jake Wightman clinched bronze in 3:30.53.
Race walker Emily Ngii raced to Commonwealth Games bronze in the 10,000m race after finishing 13th place at the World Championship in Oregon last month.
Ngii timed a new African record of 43:50.00, in an event won by Australian Jemima Montag who successfully defended her title.
On Friday Kenya’s Jackline Chepkoech upstaged Olympic champion Peruth Chemutai from Uganda to win her first senior global title in women’s 3,000m steeplechase.
With two laps to go the Chepkoech was striving to get clear of Chemutai who was tracking her steps from the start of the back straight before Chemutai hit the deck at the first barrier.
In the end, the Kenyan youngster ensured she won in a Games record of 9min 15.68sec, ahead of England’s Elizabeth Bird taking silver, lowering her own British record to 9:17.79.
Chemutai recovered from falling down to finish third.
“I will train well to continue winning, Kenyans have continued to struggle in this race recently, so I wanted to restore hope amongst the Kenyans. This was my second race in the senior category and I am excited about it,” Chepkoech.