Maureen Cherotich wants to emulate her hero Chebet in 5,000m

Tuesday, August 10th, 2021 00:00 |
Maureen Cherotich crosses the finish line to win the 5,000m women race during the World Under 20 trials at Kasarani last month. Photo/PD/DAVID NDOLO

Maureen Cherotich will be hoping to emulate world champion Beatrice Chebet when the country hosts the World Athletics Under-20 Championships between August 17 and 22 at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.

For Cherotich, Chebet who holds the World Under 20 5,000m race title, is the ultimate person to emulate when the postponed junior event comes to Nairobi and by extension Africa for the first time.

Having finished fourth in the 1,500m race during the 2018 Africa Junior Championship, the Under 20 event will be her opportunity for redemption.

“Winning will prove that I have matured as an athlete compared to where I was three years ago,” she told People Sport.

The star of the 17-year-old from Keringet Athletics Training Camp in Nakuru County, has been on the rise for past two years in which she also won the 2020 National Cross Country Championships in the under 20 category but unfortunately was not able to represent Kenya at the Africa Cross Country Championships.

“For me not going for Africa Cross country Championships in Togo was a big setback. In athletics it feels good to compete when you’re in top form,” said Cherotich.

During the national under 20 trials, Cherotich calculated her race well beating Zena Jeptoo who had been tipped to win the race. She clocked 15:44.00 with Jeptoo finishing second in 15:46.20.

“In the long distance races is is crucial to do proper timing and knowing your surroundings well. I take initial races to study my opponents which helps me to get my tactics right. During the under 20 Championships, that will not change,” she added after a Thursday morning training sessions at the Kasarani Stadium

Cherotich coached by Kibet Ng’etich, will partner with Jeptoo

in Team Kenya for the World Under-20 Athletics Championships that started in under 10 days.

Meanwhile, the ministry of Sports has once again reminded athletics lovers that fans will not be allowed at the Kasarani Stadium during the global event.

Sports Principal Secretary Joe Okudo last week said in a statement sent to media houses that sports guidelines and Ministry of Health protocols requires that only athletes, officials, technical teams and the Local Organising Committee members be allowed into the stadium during the championships.

“Since no fan will allowed to enter the stadium, we are asking Kenyans to follow the championships and cheer the national team which will be aired live,” said the Sports Principal Secretary.

He further said that everybody must continue doing their part in containing the virus ahead of the championship which kicks off in less than two weeks.

“On behalf of the entire ministry, I wish our Under-20 Kenyan team success in the events they are participating in,” added Okudo.

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