Freeman Cebu Sports

Kenyans vs Ethiopians in Paris

SPORTS EYE - Raffy Uytiepo - The Freeman

This early, it looks like the Kenyans and the Ethiopians will clash for the marathon gold in the 2024 Paris Olympics. The Kenyan team is bannered by former world record holder Eliud Kipchoge and Benson Kipturo, the 2021 Boston Marathon and Chicago Marathon champion. Kipruto also won the 2024 Tokyo Marathon, clocking a personal best of 2:03:16. Also with the team are Tamirat Tola, who broke Geoffrey Mutai’s 12-year New York City Marathon course record last year and Alex Mutiso, who won the London Marathon last month with  Timothy Kiplagat, who placed second in the 2024 Tokyo Marathon as reserve. The women’s team is likewise explosive with Peres Jepchirchir, who recently broke the women’s only world record by clocking 2:16:16. The other team members are former women’s world record holder Brigid Kosgei and 2024 Boston Marathon back-to-back champion Helen Obiri, with 2024 Boston Marathon second placer Sharon Lokedi as reserve.

Ethiopian team                  

Not to be taken lightly is the Ethiopian team headed by 2024 Boston Marathon champion Sisay Lemma and Kenenisa Bekele, who previously won four Olympic medals (3 golds, one silver across the 5,000m and  10,000m events at Athens in 2004 and at Beijing(in 2008). Bekele also placed second to Mutiso in the 2024 London Marathon in 2:04:15. The women’s team is composed of 2022 Berlin Marathon female world record holder Tigist Asefa, the only woman in history to run a marathon in under two hours and 12 minutes, Amane Beriso Beriso, who won the marathon in the 2023 World Athletics Championship in Budapest, and Gotytum Gebreslase, who won the marathon in her debut. She also won the Berlin marathon. The Ugandan team are also medal contenders headed by Victor Kiplagat, gold medalist at the World Championships in Budapest, Stephen Kissa, and Andrew Kwemoi, the Milan Marathon champion in 2023. The women’s team is composed of Rebecca Chetegei, Stella Chesang, and Mercyline Chelangat.

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