Kiprotich to lead Uganda WXC charge against Kenyan might
Uganda have fished out their finest distance runners to take on the might of Kenya and Ethiopia at their home IAAF World Cross Country Championships at the Kololo Independence Ceremonial Ground in Kampala on March 26.
Kenya and Ethiopia have dominated every single World Cross since 1983 but in hosting the 39th edition of the now biennial global showpiece, Uganda are determined to be among the individual and team medals.
Their charge will be captained by four-time World Cross campaigner, Timothy Toroitich who finished fifth at the last edition in Guiyang, China where Geoffrey Kipsang Kamworor led Bedan Karoki to the 1-2 in the men (12km) long race.
Toroitich finished eighth in the 10000m race at the Beijing 2015 Worlds where once again, Kamworor who is in the Kenyan squad for Kampala took silver behind British star Mo Farah.
The 25-year-old will lead a strong 28-member squad as the host nation aims to lift a world title for the first time in their history.
The team also includes Stephen Kiprotich, the 2012 Olympic and 2013 world champion in the marathon, whose best finish at the World Cross was a notable sixth place showing in 2011.
Kiprotich who trains at the Global Sports Camp in Kaptagat alongside his successor as Olympics champion, Eliud Kipchoge, caused Kenyans heartbreak when he beat Abel Kirui to the top medal in London before winning the world title a year later in Moscow.
Joshua Cheptegei, the 2014 World U20 10,000m champion and 2015 African junior cross country gold medallist, was also named to the squad. The 20-year-old doubled at last year’s Olympic Games, finishing sixth in the 10,000m and eighth in the 5000m.
Dorcus Ajok, the 2015 World University Games 1500m champion, has been named to the mixed relay team where she will team up with Ronald Musagala, Winnie Nanyondo and Geoffrey Ruto, paving the way for a spot in the senior women’s category that was filled Emily Chebet, who will serve as women’s team captain.
Chebet is not related to the Kenya two-time World Cross champion – Emily Chebet – who is serving a four year suspension for doping.
The national team has been in a two-month residential training camp in Bukwo and Kapchorwa under the watchful eye of a technical team led by head coach Benjamin Longiross, assistant coaches Francis Demayi and Benjamin Njia, coach Grace Chesang and team manager Peter Chelangat.
-Report sourced from the IAAF
Senior Men: Joshua Kipurui Cheptegei, Phillip Kipkeko, Abdalla Kibet Mande, Timothy Toroitich, Stephen Kiprotich, Stephen Kissa; reserve Fred Musobo and Mande Bushendich
Senior Women: Mercyline Chelangat, Racheal Zena Chebet, Stella Chesang, Doreen Chesang, Doreen Chemutai, Emilly Chebet; reserve Annet Chebet
U20 Men: Jacob Kiplimo, Titus Kwemoi Given, Victor Kiplangat, Elisha Chemutai, Kevin Kibet, Mathew Chekwurui; reserve Anthony Ayeko and Abel Chebet
U20 Women: Peruth Chemutai, Esther Chekwemoi, Sarah Chelangat, Janat Chemusto, Adha Munguleya, Scallet Chemos
Mixed Relay: Winnie Nanyondo, Geoffrey Ruto Kipkorir, Dorcus Ajok, Ronald Musagala; reserve Esther Chebet and Abu Mayanja
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