Lilian Kasait, the reigning world cross country silver medalist, proved her mettle as she cruised to 5,000m victory at the fifth National Police Service Athletics Championships at Nyayo Stadium yesterday.
Kasait, a Form Three Student at Winners Girls High School in Keringet in Nakuru County, blasted off from a forest of legs in the third lap. She then toyed around the field opening a 50-metre gap, winning in 15:36.3.
World 3,000m steeplechase champion Hyvin Kiyeng (15:5.11), Jackline Jerotich (16:03.5) and Pauline Mutua (16:16.7) returned second, third and fourth respectively.
Kasait said: “I am happy for the win. I now long for the national championships and the national trials because I want to make the team to the World Championships.”
Kiyeng, who is also the Olympic silver medalist, said a tough duel await her and Bahrain’s Olympic champion Ruth Jebet at the third stop of the IAAF Diamond League meeting at the Hayward Field in Eugene, USA, on May 27.
“We have got used to her and so things would be well soon. I hope to defend my world title at the World Championships in London,” said Kiyeng.
Beatrice Chepkoech, fresh from leading Kenya to gold medal in mixed relays at the IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Kampala last March, chalked up 1,500m victory in 4:06.5 ahead of Winfred Mbithe (4:10.0) and Margaret Jelimo (4:10.8).
Caroline Tuigong (4:18.9), the 2006 world junior 3,000m steeplechase champion, checked in fourth.
In the men’s front, world 1,500m silver medalist Elijah Manangoi won 800m in 1:44.8.
Little known Justus Kipkoech (1:45.0), Job Kinyor (1:45.2) and Timothy Sein (1:45.4) followed.
Manangoi said he was ready for fierce battle with other top guns in 1,500m showdown.
“My form is picking steadily. I hope to make the team for London. I know the competition will not be easy,” said Manangoi.
Olympic javelin silver medalist Julius Yego hurled 78.44m to win ahead of Henry Yego (57.41m).
Vincent Rono wore the 10,000m crown in 28:10.1, upstaging Commonwealth Games 10,000m sensation Peter Kirui (28:29.3).