The East African nation selected its runners for the World Cross-Country Championships on Saturday.
Running with a loaded field of world-class talent, a relatively unknown Philemon Rono won the men’s 12K event at the KCB/AK National Cross Country Championships in Nairobi on Saturday.
Rono’s winning time was 35 minutes and 22 seconds.
Going into the race, the Kenyan police officer wasn’t expected to win, but at the 8K mark, he shared the lead with Timothy Kiptoo and Geoffrey Kirui.
In the final 600 meters, the 22-year-old dropped the hammer to win the race.
“My plan was just to hang among the leaders but the guys increased the pace,” Rono recalled afterwards. “I didn’t have any fear and making the national team after trying for a number of years makes me very happy.What remains now is to train hard for the World Cross but this is a dream come true.”
Second place went to Timothy Kiptoo, while Geoffrey Kirui was third.
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