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Defending Champion Kosgei heads Kenyan squad for Vilamoura

Paul Kosgei wins World Half Marathon (Getty Images)Paul Kosgei wins World Half Marathon (Getty Images) © Copyright

Defending champion, Paul Kosgei  will spearhead 10 runners  to represent Kenya at the IAAF World Half Marathon scheduled for 4 October in Vilamoura, Portugal.

Kosgei won the title last year in his first major race in Brussels, where he beat Morocco's Jaouad Gharib in a sprint finish in the last 50 metres.

Kosgei skipped the World Championships in Paris this year so as to concentrate on the Vilamoura event.

According to the list announced yesterday by Athletics Kenya (AK) secretary general, David Okeyo, Kosgei will team up with Patrick Ivuti who was placed second in his best time of 59.31 in Lisbon in 2000 and Martin Lel. Other team members are Jackson Koech and Paul Kirui.

Three-time World half marathon runner-up, Susan Chepkemei leads the women's squad. Chepkemei has finished second on three occasions since 2000. She says she is tired of silver medals and will this time round take a shot at the gold medal. Chepkemei has a personal best of 1:07.36.

Also in the Kenyan squad is Commonwealth 10,000 m champion, Salina Kosgei who will be seeking to make up for her poor performance in the recently concluded World Championships, where she finished a poor 19th in the 10,000m during the event. Others in the team include Magdaline Chemjor, Helen Kimutai and Jane Amoro.

The team will be led by former World and Olympic silver medallist, Patrick Sang , who will double up as coach and manager.

Full Kenyan team :
Men
1. Paul Kosgei
2. Jackson Koech
3. Paul Kirui
4.Martin Lel
5. Patrick Ivuti

Women:
1.Susan Chepkemei
2. Magdaline Chemjor
3.Helen Kimutai
4. Jane Amoro
5. Selina Kosgei