Saruni, Moraa earn Olympic tickets, Kipruto drops out


Saruni, Moraa earn Olympic tickets, Kipruto drops out
Leonard Bett and Abraham Kibiwot approach the finish line during the national trials for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. (PHOTO/Kelly Ayodi/Sportpicha)

In Summary

  • US-based Michael Saruni led World bronze medallist Ferguson Rotich in securing tickets for Tokyo Olympics as Emmanuel Korir came home third in the 800m race. In a tense final without clear favourite, Saruni emerged top in 1:45.81
  • Leonard Bett won the men's 3000m steeplechase ahead of Abraham Kibiwott who slowed at the finish to allow his teammate to move on ahead and take the victory with both men assured qualification for next month's Games. Benjamin Kiget was third

US-based Michael Saruni led World bronze medallist Ferguson Rotich in securing tickets for Tokyo Olympics as Emmanuel Korir came home third in the 800m race. In a tense final without clear favourite, Saruni emerged top in 1:45.81.

Leonard Bett won the men’s 3000m steeplechase ahead of Abraham Kibiwott who slowed at the finish to allow his teammate to move on ahead and take the victory with both men assured qualification for next month’s Games. Benjamin Kiget was third.

Defending champion Conseslus Kipruto who has had a turbulent season on and off the track dropped off after an underwhelming race but could yet be considered as the third entrant if the panel of selectors decide so.

“It was a tactical race and making Tokyo team was the most important thing. I am happy to wear Kenyan colours again,” said Saruni.

On his part, the experinced Rotich said team work is key if the Kenyans are to succeed in Tokyo.

“I know most of the guys we will be competing with in Tokyo. It is not going to be easy but I think we will work together to ensure we get medals,” said Korir.

After finishing third and almost assured of the third slot in the team, Korir said he will decide if he do both 400m and 800m in Tokyo.

“I did it in 2019 at the Doha Games and it was a nice experience. Heading to Tokyo my priority will be in 800m but I will decide if will double,” said Korir

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Story By Gilbert Kiprotich
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