Kipruto eyeing continental dominance in Algeria

Athletes during athletics trials for World Under 18 and Africa Under 20 Championship at the Nyayo national ...
FILE: Athletes during athletics trials for World Under 18 and Africa Under 20 Championship at the Nyayo national stadium on June 13, 2017. Photo/Stafford Ondego/Sportpicha/Citizen

Two-time East Africa Secondary School Games champion Rhonex Kipruto expressed his delight at the prospect of representing his country on an international stage as he punched his ticket for the Africa Under-20 Championships in Algeria.

Kipruto, 17, saw the realization of his dream when he romped to victory in the men’s 10,000m at the National Under-18 Trials held at the Nyayo National Stadium on Tuesday.

Kipruto who looks up to two-time Olympics and world 800m record holder David Rudisha outsprinted Leonard Kipkemoi of South Rift at the finish line.

The National Secondary School Cross Country champion stopped the timer at 29:05.1, one second ahead of  Kipkemoi who settled for second place in 29:06.0 to seal the two slots available for the team.

Philip Tarus of Central Rift clocked 29:16.5 and missed an opportunity to represent Kenya at the Africa Junior Championships slated for June 29 – July 2 in Tlemcen, Algeria.

“It has always been my dream to represent my country and I hope after I finish school I will be able to succeed further internationally,” Kipruto who trains at St Patric, Iten with Brother Colm O’Connell said.

In the second final of the two-day trials,  Kenya will only send Hemstone Wanyonyi from West Pokot in the boys 10,000m walk race after his colleagues Lawi Kipsang, Sananka Lamayain and Emason Kiplagat were disqualified due to techniques.

Wanyonyi took top podium place in 44:38.17.

Meanwhile, Dominic Samson of Nyamira and Joseph Sila of Southern Region secured their places in Team Kenya for the IAAF World Athletics Under 18 championships scheduled for next month 12-16 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.

Samson(44:14.9) had a comfortable lead lead of about ten minutes between him and Sila who clocked 49:25.4 his team mate Elvis Kyalo finished third in 49:41.0.

On the final day of the trials on Wednesday, World Junior 5,000m silver medalist Emmaculate Chepkirui will fight for a place in the girls 3000m finals for U18 team.

While Edna Chepitok who won the girls 1,500m pre-trials in Eldoret, Uasin Gishu County will be on the looks out for Rachel Nzangi of Maanza Primary school in Machakos County in tomorrow’s finals.

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Story By Charity Wanja
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