Kenyan Officials Frustrated With Men’s Distance Squad

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Sep. 6, 2011
  • Updated Sep. 7, 2011 at 6:06 PM UTC
Eliud Kipchoge, the 2003 5000m champion, failed to win a medal for Kenya at the recent World Championships. Photo:

Eliud Kipchoge, the 2003 world 5000m champion, failed to win a medal for Kenya at the recent World Championships. Photo:

Their head coach thinks they lack a decent finishing kick.

Never mind the fact that Kenya enjoyed its best-ever performance at the recent World Championships in Daegu, South Korea. Kenyan officials are frustrated–specifically with the men’s 5,000m and 10,000m squads.

In both events, races traditionally full of success, no medal was awarded to a Kenyan.

In the 10,000m, Martin Irungu Mathath finished a disappointing fifth, while Peter Kirui came in sixth. It was the fifth consecutive time that Kenya failed to win the 10,000m.

Meanwhile in the 5,000m race, Isaiah Kiplangat Koech could only muster fifth and Thomas Longosiwa was good for sixth. The 2003 world champion, Eliud Kipchoge, was seventh.

“Going into the championships, we had three athletes who had impressive times. But in the competition, they just did not have the finishing kick. This is something we must look into as a matter of urgency,” said head coach Peter Mathu.  ”Many of our athletes take part in road races prior to major championships and this always slows them down when the competition starts.”

For More: The Standard

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Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.

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