Two athletes with high medal prospects at this year’s World Championships in Beijing, Brimin Kipruto and Geoffrey Kamworor, believe China is a lucky hunting ground for them.
Kipruto who is a former Olympics 3,000 metres steeplechase champion and Kamworor, the current World Cross Country senior men’s champion, have won in China.
Kipruto won the Olympic gold in 2008 in the Olympics held at the National Stadium, knick named the “Bird’s Nest” while Kamworor won the World Cross title in Guiyang early this year.
“I remember China because of that Olympics gold medal and I believe I can repeat the feat during the World Championships,” Kipruto said after a speed work session at the Safaricom Stadium, Kasarani on Friday. The steeple chaser has been to four World Championships – Helsinki in 2005 (bronze), Osaka, Japan when he won gold in 2007, Silver in Daegu in 2011. He finished outside medal bracket in the Berlin championship.
Kipruto and Ezekiel Kemboi, who is world champion, are the most experienced in the steeple chase team having been competing in the race at Olympic and world championships for 11 years and 14 years respectively. The others in the team are World silver holder Conseslus Kipruto and Africa champion and current Diamond League leader in the event, Jairus Birech.
Historically, Kenya has always done well when the big events - Olympics or Worlds, are held in Far East countries. Observers think the weather at the time of the events favour Kenyans.
With gods of weather on their side, Kamworor believes the 10,000 metres trio that comprises of himself, Bedan Karoki and Paul Tanui can win the event’s tile that has eluded Kenya for many years. The last time the country won the event at the Worlds was in 2001 through Charles Kamathi who upstaged Ethiopia’s Haile Gabrselassie who had reigned unbeaten on the event for many years.
MO FARAH CONTEST
Kamworor, Karoki and Tanui have the task of beating double (5000m and 10,000m) Olympic champion Mohammed Farah otherwise known as “Mo Farah” of Britain and other emerging challenges from other countries like Ethiopia.
The 10,000m men team, under coach Julius Kirwa, has been working on a strategy to stop the Briton from showing his “curled horns” celebration sign at the end of the race.
“We are talking among ourselves so that we will run as a team and I believe my colleagues are serious on it”, Kamworor said after taking Kirputo on several speed work sessions at the Kasarani team camping venue.