Friday, August 19, 2022

Kenya

AK National Trials: Jepleting shocks field to seal 5,000m ticket

The 2015 World Military 1,500metres champion Selah Jepleting stunned the rich field to win the 5,000m final and qualify for the World Athletics Championships and Commonwealth Games.

Jepleting, the 1,500m specialist, stepped on her gas pedal, hitting the bell first before winning in 15 minutes and 05.23 seconds on Saturday at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.

She edged out newly crowned Africa 5,00m champion Beatrice Chebet to second place in 15:07.73 as both qualified for the World Athletics Championships due for July 15 to 24 in Oregon, United States and Commonwealth Games planned from July 28 to August 8 in Birmingham, England.

Selah Jepleting

Selah Jepleting (centre) runs in the leading pack during women’s 5,000 metres final at Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani on June 25, 2022 in the Kenyan trials for the World Athletics Championships-cum-Commonwealth Games.

Photo credit: Chris Omollo | Nation Media Group

Jepleting, the 2015 World Relays medley relay silver medallist, will be taking part at the world event and the “Club” Games for the first time.

Jepleting, a Kenya Defence Forces athlete, will also be representing the country for the first time in six years.

She had not met the world event qualifying time of of 15:10.00 heading into the trials.

Chebet, the 2019 World 5,000m champion, fresh from winning the Africa title in 15:00.82 on June 9 in Mauritius, will also be making her first appearance at the World and Commonwealth Games events.

“I am glad to win and represent Kenya again. However, I am not yet there in terms of preparations. I need to work on my finishing speed in the last two laps,” said Jepleting, 30.

“I’m still recovering after my victory at the Africa Senior Championships, and all I wanted was to make the team. I now want to train well knowing that it won’t be easy in Oregon and Birmingham,” said Chebet.

World 5,000m champion Hellen Obiri had taken part in the 10,000m race the previous day and won the event.

Kenya has the privilege to field four athletes with Obiri getting a direct entry by virtue of being the world champion.

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