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What you need to know:
- The 2012 World Indoor 3,00m champion, Hellen Obiri will lead Kenya’s assault at the 2018 World Indoor Championships due March 1 to 4 in Birmingham, England.
- Obiri, who won silver in the 3,000m at 2014 World Indoor Championships in Sopot, Poland, losing her title to Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba, will spearhead a team of seven athletes for the Birmingham event.
- The 28-year-old World 5,000m outdoor champion, will try to reclaim the 3,000m title from Dibaba, in a race where she is Kenya's sole representative.
The 2012 World Indoor 3,00m champion, Hellen Obiri will lead Kenya’s assault at the 2018 World Indoor Championships due March 1 to 4 in Birmingham, England.
Obiri, who won silver in the 3,000m at 2014 World Indoor Championships in Sopot, Poland, losing her title to Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba, will spearhead a team of seven athletes for the Birmingham event.
The 28-year-old World 5,000m outdoor champion, will try to reclaim the 3,000m title from Dibaba, in a race where she is Kenya's sole representative.
While naming the team Monday, Athletics Kenya Vice President Paul Mutwii indicated that Davis Kiplagat, who represented Kenya in the 5,000m at the 2017 World Championships in London, will team up with Bethwell Birgen in the men’s 3,000m race.
It will be the first time Kiplagat is competing for Kenya at World Indoor, while Birgen is making a return, after he failed to reach the final in men’s 1,500m at the 2016 World Indoor Championships in Portland, USA.
Birgen competed in the 1,500m outdoor at the 2013 World Championships, where he fell in the semi-finals.
Kiplagat is a Commonwealth Youth Games 3000m champion, having also won silver medal in the 10,000m at the 2016 Africa junior Championships, before winning 3000m gold at the Africa Youth championships in Mauritius the same year.
Birgen finished second and Kiplagat fourth at Meeting Dusseldorf Indoor on February 4 in Germany.
Kenya last won the World Indoor 3,000m title during the 2014 held in Sopot, Poland through Caleb Mwangangi.
Vincent Kibet, who reached the final in the men’s 1,500m in Portland, has another opportunity to redeem his image, with selection in men’s 1,500m where he is the sole representative.
Emmanuel Korir, who is fresh from making a return after smashing the African and National Indoor record with victory in 800m at the NYRR Millrose Indoor Games in New York on February 3, will feature in the men’s 800m.
Korir claimed the slot in 1 minute and 44.21 seconds, erasing the previous African record of 1:44.52 set by Ethiopian Mohammed Aman at Aviva Indoor Grand Prix on February 15, 2014 in Birmingham, United Kingdom.
Korir now hopes to make amends in Birmingham after he stunningly failed to pull through the semi-finals in 800m outdoor at the World Championships in London last year.
Margaret Nyairera, who won bronze in 800m in 2016 at Portland, will now garn for glory in the women’s 800m. Pamela Jelimo was the last Kenyan to win the women’s 800m World Indoor title at the 2012 event held in Istanbul.
Steeplechaser Beatrice Chepkoech will compete in the1,500m race in a championship , where Kenya will be hoping for an improved show after it only got two bronze medals- Margaret Nyairera (800m) and Augustine Choge (3,000m) in 2016.
“This is a strong team picked on merit and we hope they will come with medals,” said Mutwii.
Daniel Payaban is the team manager, William Tanui coach and Josephine Teeka is the chaperone.
Mutwii indicated that the team will assemble in Nairobi at least five days before departure noting that they are in communication with the athletes.
Men; Emmanuel Korir (800m), Vincent Kibet (1,500m), Bethwell Birgen, Davis Kiplagat (3,000m)
Women: Margaret Nyairera (800m), Beatrice Chepkoech (1,500m, Hellen Obiri (3,000m).