Kenya: Coach impressed by time posted in Paris meeting
When the eighth leg of the Diamond League was run in Paris last Friday, Kenyan coaches were keenly watching the progress of local athletes in the meet.
This was especially important because some of the athletes are in the Olympic team and had trained at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani for at least one week before the Diamond League meet.
National assistant coach Sammy Rono says he was satisfied with the performance of Kenyan athletes during the Diamond League. He also pointed out Olympic champion Pamela Jelimo’s fourth world leading time in 600m on Thursday in Brussels as a sign of good things to come.
“Jelimo’s performance was particularly exciting and we are convinced that if she continues this way, a world record is not far from her sight,” he said.
Rono said he was also satisfied by the time posted by Kenyan men in the 5,000m event despite not winning the race.
Isaiah Kiplangat, a member of the Olympic 5,000m team was the leading Kenyan when he finished third in 12:48.64. Ethiopian Gebremeskel Dejen, who clocked 12:46.81 won the race and his compatriot Gebrhiwett Hagos was second.
Thomas Longosiwa, another Kenyan who will travel to London clocked 12:49.04 to finish fifth ahead of another Team Kenya member Edwin Soi, who was tenth in 12:55.99. “When we consider their timing it was very good with three weeks to the Olympics,” said Rono.
He said the performance in Paris has also given them an indication on where they need to work on ahead of the London games, but still remain concerned about the emergence of unknown athletes from Ethiopia.
“Previously, we knew about Kenenisa Bekele and prepared for him.
“However, it seems like we do not have to worry about him any more and it is this new breed of athletes from Ethiopia that should concern us. They are young and we have never watched them before.It makes it tricky for us to plan for them,” said Rono.
Rono also pointed out that the performance of Moses Masai in that race where he clocked 12:59.21 was proof that the country can expect good results also from the 10,000m team.
“Masai had wanted to do a sub 13 in the race and we are excited for him because he managed to do just that. Achieving that after recovering from an injury is exciting for all of us.
“It means he can do better in his specialty when the Olympics start,” he said.
By Gilbert Wandera, The Standard
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