Chemutai leads Cross-Country field in Tororo

Peruth Chemutai

Olympic 5000m champion Joshua Cheptegei’s main focus this year is on retaining his world 10000m title in Eugene. Inevitably, he won’t compete at the National Cross-country Championships in Tororo today.

Similarly, 10000m Olympic bronze medallist Jacob Kiplimo won’t take part. But the anxious crowd in Tororo will witness another Olympic champion.
3000m steeplechase queen Peruth Chemutai will be the star attraction as she starts her season in the senior women’s 10km race. Her presence, however, doesn’t guarantee a victory, according to her coach Addy Ruiter. 

“Peruth is fit again but needs more weeks of training after her knee injury to be on her level again,” he said.
Chemutai faces a strong field that has her training partners Prisca Chesang, Esther Chebet, Sarah Chelangat and Mercyline Chelangat.
Chesang,18, who won the 5000m bronze medal at the World U20 Championships in Kenya last August, looks to be in good shape especially after finishing third at the Elgoibar Cross-Country Gold Meeting in Spain on January 9. 

Chebet was seventh in that race.
Chemutai’s teammates from Police club like Janat Chemusto, Patricia Chekwemoi and Esther Chekwemoi will also be in the fray in Tororo.
Hosea Kiplangat has a chance to win a third straight national title if he can beat experienced Moses Kurong, Jacob Araptany, Stephen Kissa and national marathon record holder Felix Chemonges.
“This is speed work for Chemonges,” said coach Benjamin Njia. 

It is the same for 2020 Dodoma Marathon winner Phillip Kiplimo.
Uganda Athletics Federation expects 502 runners with the best in the junior and senior categories be selected for the Africa Cross-country Championships due next month in Mozambique.