Men and women’s 10,000m races will not feature in the Kenya Police Service Athletics Championships starting Wednesday at the Kasarani Stadium.
Police coach Isaac Kirwa disclosed that their 10,000m athletes will now take part in their respective 5,000m finals due for Thursday.
Kirwa said the move has been necessitated by the National Championships coming up next week hence they don't want to tire their athletes.
“We shall just pick the 10,000m teams from the 5,000m finals,” adding that the National Championships will be crucial since the event will be used to select the team for the Africa Senior Championships planned for August 1 to 5 in Assaba's Delta State, Nigeria.
The Assaba championships will be used to pick the African team for the IAAF Continental Cup (World Cup) due September 8 and 9 in Ostrava, Czech.
“It will be good to have our 10,000m athletes in good shape at the trials,” said Kirwa.
Commonwealth 10,000m silver medallist Stacy Ndiwa and Commonwealth 5,000m silver medallist Margaret Chelimo will be the star-attraction in the women’s 5,000m.
Seasoned athletes Margaret Wangare, Sheila Chesang, Lydia Rotich and Ruth Bosibori are also bracing up for the 5,000m challenge.
Former national 5,000m champion Vincent Yator is out to defend his 5,000m, but faces stiff challenge from 2014 Commonwealth 5,000m champion Caleb Mwangangi, experienced Mathew Kisorio and Josphat Bett, who is fresh from Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.
Beatrice Chepkoech will defend her 3,000m steeplechase title against 2016 World 3,000m steeplechase champion Hyvin Kiyeng, who is back after missing out last year's season and Commonwealth 3,000m bronze medallist Purity Kirui.
Chepkoech will also be defending her 1,500m title. Defending champion Collins Cheboi has a battle at hand as he prepares to face World and Commonwealth 1,500m champion Elijah Manangoi, 2018 World Indoor 3,000m bronze medallist Bethwell Birgen and Harun Koech.
Manangoi won the 800m title last year but the two-lap event has Job Kinyor and Jeremiah Mutai, while the 2013 World 800m champion Eunice Sum is expected to bounce back putting defending champion Emily Cherotich under pressure.