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Highs and lows of World 1,500m silver medalist Cheruiyot

ATHLETICS By IAAF | June 22nd 2018
[PHOTO: COURTESY]

IAAF Diamond League 1500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot says the high point of his career so far was earning a world silver medal.

But his all-time low, however, was missing out by 0.07 on qualification for the 2014 IAAF World U20 Championships.

The 2017 season had gone very well for me. I’d enjoyed some good training with my training partner Elijah Manangoi and our coach, Bernard Ouma, had given us good direction.

That year I had good endurance but I also felt that Manangoi and I were faster than ever before over the short distances and we were very confident.

I was encouraged by my performance at the Monaco Diamond League meeting. There I ran a Personal B est of 3:29:10 to finish second behind Manangoi and I went into the World Championships in London ranked number two in the world and hopeful of winning a medal.

We had a plan before the race to make it fast and I took the pace. I felt things were going well in the race and it was only in the last 80 metres, when I started to feel tired, that Manangoi went past.

To win silver was a very happy moment for me because it was my first medal at a global championship. I had dreamt of this moment for many years and I was almost in tears on the medal podium. Manangoi and I were very happy because we train together and we share the same club and coach.

I went back to my home village of Singorwet in Bomet County and I enjoyed a great celebration in which two cows were slaughtered.

My parents were very happy when I won a medal. I bought them a house, a tractor and a three-acre plot of land. I also put together some funds to help my brothers and sisters go to school, while I bought myself a car and some land to grow tea, maize and potatoes.

My low moment came at the 2014 Kenyan Trials for the World U20 Championships. I was ranked second or third going into the 800m, but I finished third and just missed a spot on the two-man team by 0.07.

I remember I was disappointed because I led for most of the race but Alfred Kipketer and Joshua Masikonde went past me in the final meters.

It took me some time to recover from the disappointment and my coach (Bernard Ouma) helped me refocus on the 2015 season. Bernard has played a vital role in my development. He has helped me financially when my family did not have funds to support me. I watched the World U20s in Eugene that year.

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