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Sumgong becomes first Kenyan woman to win Olympic marathon

ATHLETICS By Reuters | August 15th 2016
Kenya's Jemima Jelagat Sumgong celebrates her victory in the Women's Marathon during the athletics event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Sambodromo in Rio de Janeiro on August 14, 2016. / AFP PHOTO

Kenyan Jemima Jelagat Sumgong won gold in the women's Olympic marathon on Sunday in two hours, 24 minutes and four seconds to become the first Kenyan woman to take the title.

Bahrain's Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa claimed silver and Ethiopian Mare Dibaba snatched the bronze.

Sumgong, 31, bided her time throughout the race, staying with the leading pack and not moving ahead until the final kilometres.

Belarusian Volha Mazuronak, 27, shook up the pack halfway through, taking the lead and briefly pulling ahead of the lead group.

The move pushed the pace, stringing out what had been a lead pack of more than two dozen runners, causing some to drop back.

It was the first in a series of attacks by the first-time Olympian, who was ultimately unable to sustain the pace and was dropped by the leaders in the closing stages before finishing fifth.

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