Two-time world 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop retained the Emsley Carr Mile title at the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games, the 11th stop of the IAAF Diamond League Meeting, in East London on Saturday.
Kenyans were in winning form in the women’s events too, as Eunice Sum underlined her status as favourite for the world 800m title with her fourth Diamond League victory even as world 5,000m silver medallist Mercy Cherono opened a 50-metre gap in the 5,000m contest.
It was particularly sweet victory for Kiprop, who is fresh from posting a jaw-dropping 3:26.69 mark in Monaco Diamond League, when he emerged from a huge pack to outsprint USA’s Matthew Centrowit.
The world 1500m champion clocked 3:54.87 after drifting from the front to a seemingly impossible boxed position with a lap to go.
As the final stages of the race unfolded, he stepped out of the huddle and clawed his way past Centrowitz and Ayanleh Souleiman, who were second and third respectively.
Sum overpowered Dutch runner Sifan Hasan to clock 1:58.44 and move 10 points clear of USA’s Ajee Wilson in the Diamond Race. Hassan was rewarded for her bold move down the back straight with a personal best of 1:59.46 in second place.
Mercy Cherono made up a 50-metre gap on Molly Huddle to take maximum points in the women’s 5000m and move to third in the standings.
Cherono came home in 14:54.81 after being 30 metres adrift with 800m to go.
She finally caught Huddle at the bell but the American, who had led for the whole race, challenged again on the last lap before succumbing and finishing second in 14:57.42.
Kenyans dominated the men’s steeplechase too, but it was not Diamond Race leader Jairus Birech who took maximum points this time.
Birech was beaten for the second time this season when former world youth and junior champion Conseslus Kipruto out-sprinted him in the home straight to win in 8:09.47.
Birech was second in 8:09.81 with Ezekiel Kemboi, who had beaten Birech in Oslo, third in 8:12.13.
There were no points available in the men’s 800m, but plenty of pride at stake as Rudisha returned to the scene of his world-record-breaking Olympic triumph.
Courtesy of standardmedia.co.ke