Timothy Cheruiyot records another win despite finishing few seconds shy of his target

By Dennis Okeyo: Sunday, July 14th 2019 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Athletics
Kenya's Timothy Cheruiyot celebrates as he crosses the finish line and wins the Men's 1500m during the IAAF Diamond League competition on July 12, 2019 in Monaco. [AFP]

World 1,500m silver medalist Timothy Cheruiyot recorded another victory despite finishing just few seconds shy of his sub 3:27 target at the ninth stop of the IAAF Diamond League in Monaco, France, on Friday night.

Cheruiyot, the two-time Diamond League trophy winner, took his wins to 11 in 12 races in the Diamond League circuit.

He ran a swift 55.6 seconds in the first lap and kept the pace high in the second lap to go past Bram Som of The Netherlands, the pacemaker, who took the field through 400m in 55.08, a little slower than the 54.4 he set in the first lap in Lausanne, Switzerland, last week.

Cheruiyot won in 3:29.97 as Norwegian Jakob Ingebrigtsen finished second in 3:30.47 while Uganda’s Ronald Musagala set a national record of 3:30.58.

World Under-18 and 20 champion George Manangoi, the younger brother of world 1,500m champion Elijah Manangoi, came sixth in a personal best of 3:31.49.

“It was a good race but we failed on our target of running three minutes and 27 seconds. Somehow, the pacemaker didn’t do his best. You know Monaco is known for fast times and that’s why we were targeting fast time,” said Bernard Ouma, who coaches Cheruiyot at Rongai Athletics Club.

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Kenyans struggled in men’s 3,000m steeplechase, an event they have dominated for more than six decades. Benjamin Kigen lost to Morocco’s world 3000m steeplechase silver medalist Soufiane El Bakkali.

El Bakkali went past Kigen in the last 20 metres to win in 8:04.82, the fastest time recorded this year. Kigen set a personal best of 8:05.12 as Ethiopia’s Getnet Wale came third in a national record of 8:05.51.

Spain’s Fernando Carro set a national record of 8:05.69 in fourth place ahead of Kenya’s Abraham Kibiwott, who recorded a personal best of 8:05.72.

In men’s 800m, 2016 Diamond League trophy winner Ferguson Rotich finished second in a personal best of 1:42.52 as Nijel Amos of Botswana ran a personal best of 1:41.73, the  fastest time in the world since the 2012 Olympic final, where David Rudisha’s set the 1:40.91 world record

Meanwhile The Netherlands Sifan Hassan broke the world record in women's one mile on Friday, clocking 4:12.33.

The 26-year-old Dutchwoman knocked 0.23 from the previous mark of 4:12.56 set by Svetlana Masterkova of Russia in 1996, when Hassan was just three years old.

After an opening 800 metres of 2:08.5 - Masterkova clocked 2:06.9 during her world record run - it appeared that the record would be out of reach for Hassan. But, running alone, she accelerated on the third lap, reaching 1200m in 3:10.2, exactly two seconds up on Masterkova and powered on to claim the first outdoor world record on the track in 2019.

Laura Weightman of Great Britain was second in 4:17.60 with Gabriella Debues-Stafford of Canada third in 4:17.87, a national record.

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