AK coaches name rookies for Gold Coast marathon
The 2013 Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon winner Kenneth Mungara Mburu and 2017 Copenhagen Marathon champion Julius Karinga have been picked to represent Kenya in the 42-kilometre race at April’s Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.
Also making the all-rookie men’s team for the April 4-15 games is seasoned long distance runner Nicholas Kamakya, who won the Gold Coast Marathon in 2011 and finished fourth at the 2012 Berlin Marathon.
He, however, dropped out of last September’s Berlin Marathon with injury.
Mungara, who won the Gold Coast Airport Marathon in 2015 and 2016, before settling second last year, has 10 career marathon wins including the Singapore Marathon in 2010, Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 2008 to 2011 and Mumbai in 2009. Karinga won the Copenhagen Marathon in May and followed up with the Grand International Casablanca Marathon last year.
He holds a personal best time of two hours, eight minutes and one second from the 2012 Dubai Marathon. He also won the 2009 Standard Chartered Kuala Lumpur and 2013 Buenos Aires Marathon races, among others.
Shelmith Muriuki, winner of last year’s Mombasa Marathon champion, Sheila Jerotich, who won Slovakia’s Kosice Peace Marathon in a course record of 2:27:34 last October, and 2014 Warsaw Marathon champion Hellen Nzembi will make the women’s team.
“The women’s team too is made of athletes who will be eying their maiden show for Kenya,” said Athletics Kenya senior vice president Paul Mutwii while naming the team on Tuesday.
Kenyan women will be eyeing to retain the title that Flomena Cheyech won in 2014 Glasgow where she led compatriot Caroline Kilel to a one-two finish.
The men’s team are out to reclaim the title they lost in Glasgow to Australian Michael Shelley, who beat Kenya’s Stephen Chemlany to second place.
Defending champion Geoffrey Kamworor and world half marathon record holder Joyciline Jepkosgei head Kenya’s team to the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in Valencia, Spain, on March 24.
World Half Marathon Championships team:
1. Geoffrey Kamworor, 2. Bedan Karoki, 3. Joram Okombo, 4. Leonard Barsoton, 5. Barselius Kipyegon
1. Joyseline Jepkosgei, 2. Fancy Chemtai, 3. Ruth Chepngétich, 4. Pauline Kaveke, 5. Mary Wacera.
Commonwealth Games marathon team:
1. Kenneth Mburu, 2. Nicholas Kamakya, 3. Julius Karinga
1. Sheila Jerotich, 2. Shelmith Muriuki, 3. Hellen Nzembi