Thursday, May 23, 2013

Kirui heads Worlds marathon list

Abel Kirui of Kenya gestures as he crosses the line for victory in the men's marathon at the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in Daegu on September 4, 2011. Photo/FILE

Abel Kirui of Kenya gestures as he crosses the line for victory in the men's marathon at the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in Daegu on September 4, 2011. Photo/FILE  NATION MDIA GROUP

By AYUMBA AYODI sayodi@ke.nationmedia.com

Athletics Kenya Thursday officially released the provisional national marathon team for the World Championships due August 10 to 18 in Moscow.

Defending champions Abel Kirui and Edna Kiplagat were among the athletes in the team that has six man and a similar number of women for the biennial Worlds.

Kirui , who won back-to-back 2009 Berlin and 2012 Daegu World Championships title, the 2013 Paris Marathon champion Peter Some, World 25km record holder Dennis Kimetto (2:06:50) and Mike Kipyego, the 2012 Tokyo Marathon champion, are in the team.

Bernard Kipyego and Bernard Koech wraps up the men’s team.

Also in the women’s team are London marathon champion Priscah Jeptoo the 2008 Amsterdam champ Lydia Cheromei, Lucy Kabuu, who holds the all time ninth fastest time in Marathon with her second place exploits at the 2012 Dubai Marathon of 2:19:34.

Others are Jemimah Jelagat, who won the 2013 Rotterdam Marathon in a personal best 2:23:27 in April and Margaret Akai, winner of the Daegu International Marathon in April with personal best of 2:23.28.

The team will be whittled down to four athletes in each category. Kenya is the only country that will be allowed to take four athletes in each category by virtue of having the defending champions.

Each country is normally allowed a maximum of three.

Proceed to residential camp

The athletes, who will not take part in any marathon races until after the World Championships, will proceed to residential camp in Eldoret at the end of this month.

Even though Kirui, who retained his World title during the 2011 Daegu Worlds, is in the team, the selectors are keeping their fingers crossed, hoping that he will have recovered from a stress fracture in his right shin in time for Moscow.

While withdrawing from last month’s London Marathon, Kirui disclosed that he had an injury that would keep him out for some time but would assess himself ahead of the Worlds.

Kirui’s injury was diagnosed as a grade two stress fracture in his right shin that was to keep him out of six weeks. However, AK technical committee chairman, Paul Mutwii hopes that Kirui will have healed by the end of this month.

Those in the women’s team are Kiplagat and 2013 London marathon champion Priscah Jeptoo, who won silver medals during the 2011 Daegu Worlds and the 2012 London Olympic Games respectively.

Also in the team are the 2008 Amsterdam Lydia Cheromei, Lucy Kabuu, who holds the all time ninth fastest time in Marathon with her second place exploits at the 2012 Dubai Marathon of 2:19:34.

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