Kemboi eyes Africa Cross slot after Sotik victory


Kemboi eyes Africa Cross slot after Sotik victory
Allan Kemboi crosses the finish line at the Sotik Cross Country. (PHOTO/Gilbert Kiprotich)

In Summary

  • Alan Kemboi and Dorcas Kimeli of Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) prevailed in a muddy and slippery course to win senior races at the second leg of Athletics Kenya (AK) Cross-Country meet held Saturday in Sotik, Bomet County
  • Kemboi who had placed fourth at the Machakos opener clocked 31:23 ahead of second-placed Geoffrey Koech (31:42) and third-placed Joseph Karanja (31:45)

Allan Kemboi said he hopes to nail a place in Team Kenya for the Africa Cross after winning the men’s senior race during the second leg of Athletics Kenya (AK) Cross-Country meet held Saturday in Sotik, Bomet County.

Kemboi who had placed fourth at the Machakos opener clocked 31:23 ahead of second-placed Geoffrey Koech (31:42) and third-placed Joseph Karanja (31:45).

The athlete who trains in Nyahururu said he is using the cross country meets in preparations for the Africa Cross Country Championships to be held in Lome, Togo next year March.

“It was tough but I believed in myself and I am happy for this win. My dream is to represent Kenya at the Africa Cross,” said Kemboi.

Dorcas Kimeli dominated the women’s race, leading from gun to tape and clocked 36:09 for victory with World Junior Cross-Country champion Beatrice Chebet who came second in 36:12.

Kimeli who won this year’s Valencia 15km race said she is now shifting her focus to KDF championship slated for early next year even as she eyes a slot in team Kenya for the continental Championships.

“I was not prepared for this course, it was very challenging especially with alot of mud but I thank God and my coaches because I ultimately won.

I will now wait for the KDF championships before competing at the national championships,” said Kimeli who finished fourth in this year’s KDF X-Country championships.

In the 8km junior men, Edwin Seko took top honours in 25:07 ahead of Shadrack Kipchirchir who finished second in 25:11 while Machakos X-Country winner Josephat Too was relegated to third place in 25:18.

Jane Ghati reigned supreme in the 6km race for girls under-20 where she clocked 20:24 as Edna Chebitok (20:29) and Maureen Cherono (20:46) placed second and third respectively.

Two new events for the youths below18 years was also held for the first time with boys competing in 6km event while girls battled it out in 5km.

Benson Sigei from Keringet clocked 19:23 to win the boys 6km as Viola Cherop won the girls 5km in 17:52.

After Sotik, Ol Kalou will be the next stop for athletes on December 21 before Kapsokwony host the fourth leg a week later.

The fifth and final leg of the Cross-Country series will be held in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County on January 4.

Summarised Results

10km senior men

1 Alan Kemboi 31:23
2 Geoffrey Koech 31:42
3 Joseph Karanja 31:45
4 Solomon Kipchoge 31:50
5 Collins Koros 32:02
6 Emmanuel Ngatuny 32:11

10km senior women

1 Dorcas Kimeli 36:09
2 Beatrice Chebet 36:12
3 Jackline Rotich 36:19
4 Caroline Chepkemoi 36:27
5 Joyline Chemutai 36:43
6 Sheila Chepkirui 37:22

8km junior men

1 Edwin Seko 25:07
2 Shadrack Kipchirchir 25:11
3Josephat Too 25:18
4 Aron Kibet 25:39
5 Wesley Kipkemoi 25:43
6 Paul Machoka 25:56

6km junior women

1 Jane Ghati 20:24
2 Ednah Chebitok 20:29
3 Maureen Cherono 20:46
4 Agnes Chebet 20:59
5 Emmaculate Anyango 21:11
6 Deborah Chemutai 21:18
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Story By Gilbert Kiprotich
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