Chepseba makes strong comeback in Police meet

By Denis Okeyo: Thursday, June 14th 2018 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Athletics
Abednego Chesebe and Nixon Chepseba (right) competes during the Police Championships. Photo.Dennis Okeyo

Nixon Kiplimo Chepseba, the 2011 IAAF Diamond League Trophy winner, yesterday staged a splendid comeback at the National Police Service Track and Field Championships at Kasarani Stadium.

The 27-year-old Chepseba had been out of action for three years nursing hamstring and groin injuries.  

Chepseba, who made his maiden appearance in the national team when he won silver at the African Junior Championships in Mauritius in 2009, targets the national trials for Africa Senior Athletics Championships in Asaba, Nigeria, next month.

He carried his 3:29.90 personal best to the start line and won his heat in 3:51.6 to set date with Collins Cheboi, a perennial competitor, in today’s 1,500m finals.

Chepseba has come a long way. He is among a handful of Kenyan runners who braved harsh climatic conditions in the rough terrains of Kerio Valley.

While in primary school, Chepseba could not run home for lunch for it was too far. He could, instead, went to the bushes to gather wild fruits.

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Yesterday, he warmed the hearts of his home fans. “Injuries have really affected me in the past three years. I sustained hamstring and groins injuries and I almost lost hope of ever competing again. But now I feel good to be back. I hope to make it to the national team in the trials next week,” said Chepseba.

Josphat Bett and Stacy Ndiwa, the Commonwealth Games 10,000m silver medalist, won 5,000m race in what selectors would use to pick 10,000m teams for the national trials.

Lydia Rotich (16:25.1) and Sylvia Rotich (16.31.1) followed as Bett (13:45.9), Kipsang Temoi (13:47.0) and Cleophas Ngetich (13:48.0) topped.

Commonwealth Games 400m finalist Maxilla Imali, former national champion Millicent Ndoro and Fresha Mwangi sailed into today’s finals.

Imali won her heat in 11.1 seconds while Ndoro clocked 11:8 seconds to win the second heat.  

Former world 400m champion Nicholas Bett, who has posted dismal performance in the past two seasons, easily won his heat in 52.0 while Kiprono Kosgei won heat two in 52.4 seconds.

“I am slowly picking up and soon I will hit my top form. I hope to run well in the national trials and make the Africa Championships," said Bett.