It's gold and silver for Kenya in 2000m steeplechase

Sunday July 16 2017

Kenya's Leonard Bett celebrates crossing the finish line to win the boys' 2000m steeplechase during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

Kenya's Leonard Bett celebrates crossing the finish line to win the boys' 2000m steeplechase during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

By AYUMBA AYODI
More by this Author
By BERNARD ROTICH
More by this Author

Kenya’s Leonard Kipkemoi and Cleophas Kandie upheld Kenya’s dominance in boys 2,000m steeplechase to the last edition of the World Under-18 Championships when they swept to a 1-2 finish on Sunday at Kasarani.

The Kenyans hit the front much early to control the race with Kandie going through the 1,000m in 2:49.90 before Kipkemoi took control just before the last water jump.

Kandie’s efforts to dig in failed as Kipkemoi stepped on the gas to win in 5 minutes and 32.52 seconds for Kenya’s seventh title over the distance.

Kenya's Leonard Bett (right- gold) and Cleophas Kandie (silver) celebrate at the end of the the boys' 2000m steeplechase final during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | MARTIN MUKANGU |

Kenya's Leonard Bett (right- gold) and Cleophas Kandie (silver) celebrate at the end of the the boys' 2000m steeplechase final during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | MARTIN MUKANGU |

Kenya's Leonard Bett (right- gold) and Cleophas Kandie (silver) celebrate at the end of the the boys' 2000m steeplechase final during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

Kenya's Leonard Bett (right- gold) and Cleophas Kandie (silver) celebrate at the end of the the boys' 2000m steeplechase final during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

Kenya's Leonard Bett celebrates crossing the finish line to win the boys' 2000m steeplechase during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

Kenya's Leonard Bett celebrates crossing the finish line to win the boys' 2000m steeplechase during the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |NATION MEDIA GROUP

Frome left: Cleophas Kandie (silver), Leonard Bett (gold) and Alemu Kitessa (bronze) pose with their medals on the podium after the presentation ceremony of the 2000m steeplechase medallists during the World Under 18 Championships at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani on July 16, 2017. PHOTO | MARTIN MUKANGU |

Frome left: Cleophas Kandie (silver), Leonard Bett (gold) and Alemu Kitessa (bronze) pose with their medals on the podium after the presentation ceremony of the 2000m steeplechase medallists during the World Under 18 Championships at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani on July 16, 2017. PHOTO | MARTIN MUKANGU |

Kipkemboi now joins Vincent Kipyegon (2015), Conseslus Kipruto (2011), Hillary Yego (2009), Abel Mutai (2005), Ronald Kipchumba (2003) and Cheruiyot Cherono (1999) in the list of Kenyans to have win the steeplechase race.

“We knew Ethiopia posed a big threat hence we had to plan well for the race,” said Kipkemoi. “The fast pace was the key to victory and it worked well for us.”

Fans cheer on their favourite athletes on Day 5 of the the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Fans cheer on their favourite athletes on Day 5 of the the World Under 18 Championships on July 16, 2017 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Kipkemoi said he is looking forward to take his reign to the World Under-20 Championships next year.

“The silver medal is better than nothing even though I had planned to win,” said Kandie.