Manangoi, Cheruiyot out to light up Stockholm
Elijah Manangoi and Timothy Cheruiyot’s tantalizing rivalry will once again be on show when the pair line up in the 1500m field for the third leg of the IAAF Diamond League in Stockholm, Sweden.
Friday’s event will mark the first outing to be held on European soil this season with the first meet being held in Doha, Qatar on May 3 before Shanghai, China played host to the second leg a fortnight ago.
Kenyans dominated the proceedings in the 1,500m race of the opening meet in Doha clinching the first seven spots with Manangoi reigning supreme in a world lead of 3:32.21 as Cheruiyot finished second in 3:32.47 with Bethwell Birgen rounding off the podium in 3:33.12.
Vincent Kibet, Charles Simotwo, Ronald Kwemoi and George Manangoi were ranked fourth to seventh respectively while Timothy Sein and Jackson Kivuva did not finish the race.
Kibet and Kivuva are however not on the start list for tomorrow’s race with Cornelius Tuwei the new Kenyan entry in the race.
In what is also expected to be another Kenyan affair tomorrow, Cheruiyot and Manangoi both who train at the Rongai Athletics Training camp are expected to light up the event with Cheruiyot out to make it a hattrick of wins in the Diamond League this season.
Elsewhere, World 5,000m champion Hellen Obiri will be returning to her speciality when she lines up in the 5,000m race for the first time this season.
The World Cross champion who beat Ethiopia’s Genzebe Dibaba in 3,000m in Doha meeting will be out to extend her unbeaten run although she will be up against compatriots World 10,000m bronze medallist Agnes Tirop and African Games 5,000m champion Margaret Chelimo.
Other Kenyan athletes in the race are; former World Cross Country bronze medallist Lilian Kasait, Loice Chemnung, Agnes Tirop, Gloria Kite and Mary Kuria.
Nelly Jepkosgei will be hoping to improve on her fourth-place finish in Doha being the sole Kenyan in 800m race with the Double Olympic 800m champion Caster Semenya missing thanks to the new IAAF rule on women with higher than normal male hormone levels- who must now artificially reduce the amount of testosterone in their bodies to be allowed to compete in races between 400m and a mile.
Semenya has consequently decided to compete in the 3000m at the Prefontaine Classic meet on June 30.
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