Cherono to headline national championships

By Dennis Okeyo: Tuesday, August 20th 2019 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Athletics
5000m runner Mercy Cherono in training session ahead of Rio Olympics 2016 at Kipchoge Stadium in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County on July 20, 2016 [Courtesy]

AK to use the National Championships starting Tuesday to select the men and women’s 10,000m team for the World Championships.

Big show awaits the athletics family as Athletics Kenya stages a three-day national championship at Nyayo Stadium from tomorrow.

The scintillating action will see AK pick the 10,000m squad to World Championships scheduled for Doha from September 28 -October 6.

The organising committee decided to conduct 10,000m earlier to give athletes enough room for recovery, in time for the World Championships.

But the main trials for the global showpiece is slated for September 12-13 at the same venue. 

All top guns from National Police, Prisons, Kenya Defence Forces and athletics-rich Rift Valley regions will be battling for the three slots to Doha.

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The stars will be led by Olympics silver medallist Paul Tanui, 2008 Beijing Olympics 5,000m bronze medallist Edwin Soi and Charles Mneria.

Also in contention for glory will be emerging talents including world under-20 10,000m champion Rhonex Kipruto and World Under-20 5,000m silver medallist Stanley Waithaka.

The 2015 World 10,000m silver medallist Geoffrey Kamworor will, however, be looking for the national title as part of his preparation for the New York City Marathon slated for November 3 but will miss the Doha World Championships.

Tanui, Soi and Mneria will represent Kenya at the on-going African Games in Morocco and will use the championships as part of his preparation for the Pan African event.

"I know the trials will be very competitive and I must really focus to make the World Championships squad,” said Tanui, who has won three bronze medals at the world championships; in 2013 Moscow, 2015 Beijing and 2017 London.

The 2014 Commonwealth Games 5,000 metres champion Mercy Cherono, who is making a return from her maternity leave, will be among top runners in the women’s 5,000m race.

Cherono will be keen on seeking to make the Kenyan team to the World Championships.

Other notable names in 5,000m include world under-20 champion Beatrice Chebet, Lydina Jeruto, KDF’s trio of Sheila Chepkirui, world half record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei and Dorcas Kimeli.

Police have entered Mary Nyaruai, Margeret Chelimo and Jackline Cherotich, while Prisons will have Nancy Nzisa, Tabitha Gichia and Lilian Kasait.

World steeplechase record holder Beatrice Chepkoech, former world champion Hyvin Kiyeng and Celiphine Chespol will highlight women’s steeplechase semi-finals.

The Manangoi brothers- -Elijah and George -will run for Prisons and Police respectively in men’s 1,500m.

The 1,500m entry also has Boaz Kiprugut, Charles Simotwo, and Ronald Kwemo, among others.

In sprints, Mike Mokamba of KDF, Mark Otieno, the promising Samuel Chege alongside Gilbert Osure will battle in sprints.

All athletes competing must come from AK affiliates and regions.

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