Kenya's national junior cross country champion John Kemboi (with neck chain) leads the boys 5000m at the Kenyan national high schools championships in Eldoret (David Macharia) © Copyright
General News Eldoret, Kenya

Kemboi the standout at the Kenyan high school champs in Eldoret

The national Cross Country junior champion, John Kemboi, ran a superb race to win the 5000m comfortably at the two-day national high schools championships that ended today (6) at Kipchoge Keino stadium in Eldoret, Kenya.

The championships also acted as an avenue for the Kenyan athletics federation to pick athletes who will be invited to the national trials set for Nairobi, 15-16 June, to pick a team for the 6th IAAF World Youth Championships, S?dtirol, Italy (8 – 12 July)

Winners who are not in the WYC category will be selected to represent Kenya in the Africa Junior Championships in Mauritius.

Kemboi, a forth year student at Kimeliet secondary school in Uasin Gishu district clocked 14:17.8 ahead of Ciprian Kotut who was timed at 14:29.2. Third was Nicholas Kiplimo in 14:36.5.

A silver medallist in the 2008 World Junior Championships in Poland, James Magut won a battle of wits with Nickson Chepseba to clinch the  1500m in 3:41.7 against Chepseba’s 3:42.0.

Magut with a PB of 3:39 achieved in Doha this year and who is in his final year as a junior hopes to make the Kenyan team to the Africa junior Championships in Sychelles.

The 2007 Burkina Faso Africa Junior 3000m Steeplechase champion Elizabeth Mueni, a student at the Nairobi’s Riruta Central school that is emerging as an athletics power house in Kenya, as expected won the race in 10:30.6.

Mueni also won silver at the World Junior Championships in Poland a year ago. Behind her at the schools championships were Purity Cherotich, 10:36.7 and Zeddy Chelagat also of Riruta Central school in 10:49.1.

The boys 3000m Steeplechase was won by Stephen Kiprotich in 9:00.1 ahead of Peter Lagat, 9:09.9 and Nelson Kosgei 9:13.8.

Some runners, like Nelly Chebet, born in 1992 ran inside the WYC qualifying time (4:35.00) when she won the 1500m in 4:22.1. Lucia Muia finished third in the 3000m in 9:33.8 that was inside the WYC qualifying time of 9:55.00. The race was won by Mercy Cherono in 9:22.8.

The boys 3000m was won by Isaiah Kiplagat in 8:12.8 ahead of Japheth Kipkorir who clocked 8:13.2 and Peter Mwololo (born 1993) clocked 8:30.5 (WYC is 8:56.00).

David Macharia (Daily Nation) for the IAAF