Athletics: Track top guns set date at national trials

By Dennis Okeyo: Friday, August 23rd 2019 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Athletics
Elijah Manango celebrates winning the 1500m final during the National Athletics Championships 2019 at Nyayo National stadium in Nairobi on August 22, 2019. Photo/Stafford Ondego/www.sportpicha.com

Kenya’s world beating stars produced superlative shows on the final day of national athletics championships at Nyayo Stadium yesterday.

World 1,500m champion Elijah Manangoi, silver medalist Timothy Cheruiyot, Africa 1,500m champion Winny Chebet and two-time Africa high jump champion Mathew Sawe proved their mettle ahead of IAAF World Athletics Championships national trials on September 12-13.

Cheruiyot, also the Commonwealth Games 1,500m silver medalist, won 800m in 1:43.11 ahead of Jonathan Kitilit (1:44.5) and Cornelius Tuwei (1:45.3).

“I wanted to gauge my speed in 800m ahead of national trials and the remaining IAAF Diamond League meetings. That’s why I opted to compete in 800m,” said Cheruiyot.

Manangoi won 1,500m in 3:37.36 beating 2015 world under-20 1500m champion Kumari Taki (3:37.44) and Justus Soget (3:38.5).

“I came here primarily to compete for my police team. It’s also part of my preparations for the national trials,” said Manangoi.

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Winny Chebet of Kenya Defence Forces won women’s 1500m finals in 4:05.09 ahead of Selah Jepleting (4:05.43) and Judith Jepleting (4:06.27).

African Youth Games 2000m steeplechase champion Fancy Cherono announced her hunger for a world championships ticket as she won 3000m steeplechase finals in 9:42.05. Mercy Wanjiru (9:43.96) and Caroline Biwott of KDF (9:56.78) followed.

Nicholas Chirchir won 400m hurdles in 49.43 beating Ezekiel Bett (50.30) and KDF’s John Gikonyi (51.17). High jumper Mathew Sawe of KDF posted 2.15 metres to defend his national title.

World under-18 400m silver medalist Mary Moraa of police won women’s 400m final in 52.65 ahead of team mate Gladys Musyoki (54.13) and Nivian Michira (54.24) of Kenya Prisons.

In men’s 400m final, Alfas Kishoyian of KDF reclaimed his 400m title by winning the 45.6 seconds, upstaging Alex Sampao (46.41) and Collins Omae (46.42).

“I am happy to reclaim my national title ahead of African Games in which I hope to post good results,” said Kishoyian. Ferdinand Omanyala and Monica Safania of police emerged as the new national men’s and women’s 100m champions respectively.  

Omanyala clocked 10.48 seconds as Samuel Chege of KDF came in second in 10.73. Prisons’ Hesbon Ochieng checked in third in 10.80. [Dennis Okeyo]

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