Moses Kipsiro has one clear message for Ugandan athletics lovers: “I am back”. And the 2010 Commonwealth Games double champion (5000m/10,000m) rarely makes empty promises. When he sets a himself target in a competition, he usually comes good.
Recovering from a disappointing display at last year’s Olympic Games in London, Kipsiro led Uganda’s 18-man team for the World Cross-country Championships in Poland yesterday with hopes of returning to the podium. “Honestly, I am feeling good physically,” Kipsiro told Daily Monitor after National Council of Sports (NCS) assistant general secretary Nicholas Muramagi had flagged off the team at Lugogo. “A medal is possible although I am told the place is extremely cold. If nothing bad happens, expect a good showing from me.”
Arguably Uganda’s most consistent runner, Kipsiro had his worst international career outing since 2006 when he finished last (15th) in the 5,000m final and 10th in the 10,000m at the Olympics.
Although many expected an Olympic medal from him, Kipsiro had been honest before the Games, indicating his shape was shaky. “I needed like one more month to train for the Olympics,” he said. “But that is behind me now.
I am focusing on Poland and the World Championships later in the year.” Three years ago when Poland hosted the World Cross-country, Kipsiro returned with bronze, cementing his place as Uganda’s most successful runner in the event following his second-place finish at the 2009 edition in Amman, Jordan. “I have good memories of Poland and I hope for better things,” noted the 27-year-old runner.
Kipsiro will compete in the senior men’s 12km race alongside Geoffrey Kusuro, Phillip Kiplimo, Timothy Toroitich and Fred Arapsudi. After close to three weeks of residential training in Kapchorwa, team coach Benjamin Longiross, has backed Kipsiro to shine. “Physically, he is very fine. I pray he is mentally strong as well,” said Longiross.