Brimin brimming confidence


Published on 03/06/2009

By Mutwiri Mutuota and Agencies

Olympic steeplechase champion, Brimin Kipruto and Beijing 1,500m silver medallist, Asbel Kiprop displayed good form in winning their events at FGK Games in Hengelo, The Netherlands.

In the star studded 1,500m men’s race, leggy Kiprop used his pace advantage to better rising Ethiopian star, Deresse Mekonnen in the last 80m for a 3:34.45 victory.

At the bell, Mekonnen, who clocked 3:34.85 for second surged ahead with Kiprop in hot pursuit.

The diminutive Ethiopian locked the inside lane as they approached the homestretch, but Kiprop sidestepped him on the outside and engaged the afterburners.

With victory assured, there was time for the All Africa Games champion to entertain the packed stadium 30m to the line.

He made the sign of the cross, punched his chest and wagged his left first finger as he crossed the line.

Rare sight

Morocco’s Mohammed Moustaoui (3:36.62) claimed the last podium place ahead of Africa 1,500m silver medallist, Gideon Gathimba (3:37.02).

The watching crowd were also treated to the rare sight of double Olympic champion, Kenenisa Bekele, dropping out of the race at halfway mark.

Once again, Moroccan-born French runner Mahiadine Mekhissi-Benabbad, who won silver in Beijing, found himself in a Kenyan sandwich in the men’s 3,000m steeplechase race.

Just like in the Bird Nest, Olympic champion Kipruto used his famed last 200m kick to deny the Frenchman victory, crossing the line in 8:06.46 ahead of Benabbad who timed 8:06.98.

Elijah Chelimo (8:12.41) led the challengers home in third ahead of Beijing bronze medallist, Richard Mateelong (8:13.73) and Africa bronze winner, Michael Kipyego (8:14.32) in fourth and fifth.

A blistering 1:43.10 effort from World Indoor champion, Abubaker Kaki Khamis was enough for the Sudanese prodigy to humble the men’s 800m field.

Personal best

However, with a 1:43.53 run for third and his personal best, Africa champion, David Rudisha, who led the race until the last 50m underlined his return to form after missing the Olympics with injury and completing his O Level education.

Morocco’s Amine Laalou (1:43.36) nicked Rudisha at the line for second place.

Commonwealth champion, Augustine Choge and Olympic silver medallist, Eliud Kipchoge lost out to another of Ethiopia’s rising star, Ali Abdosh in the fast 5,000m race won with a world topping 12:59.56.

At the bell, Kipchoge, Choge, Beijing bronze winner, Eliud Soi and bright prospect, Jacob Korir with Abdosh trailing hit the front.

Korir was dropped 250m to go but in a stunning display, Abdosh accelerated from the back, got past his challengers from the outside lane before sprinting away to leave the Kenyan charge chocking.

Choge (13:00.79) pipped a surprised Kipchoge (13:00.91) on the line for second with Soi (13:01.69) in fourth. Chesari (13:04.12) and former junior champion, Mangata Ndiwa (13:05.12) took fifth and sixth. Kiplimo

Kimutai (20.797km) came second in the one-hour race behind world marathon record holder, Haile Gebrselassie who chalked 20.822km.

Viola Kibiwott (4:02.70) was third in the women’s 1,500m race behind All Africa Games champion, Gelete Burka (3:58.79) and Russia’s Anna Alminova (4:01.54).

Burka’s winning time was also a world lead.

 

 

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