Athletes in action in the 1500m (Getty Images) © Copyright
Preview Nairobi, Kenya

Preview: girls' 1500m – IAAF World U18 Championships Nairobi 2017

Unsurprisingly, it is Kenya which appears to hold all the aces in this contest, their two entrants, Edina Jebitok and Rachel Nzangi, holding the two fastest times in the field.

Jebitok will start as favourite after her victory at the Kenyan U18 Championships in Nairobi last month, and the personal best of 4:16.90 she ran there puts her several seconds clear of her international rivals. However, she will likely face a tough race for gold from compatriot Nzangi, who was runner-up at the national trials in 4:17.30.

Bulgaria’s Lilyana Georgieva is likely to be in the medal shake-up, the 16-year-old boasting a PB of 4:20.01 which she ran indoors in Istanbul earlier this year. She warmed up for Nairobi by taking victory at the Balkan Junior Championships last week in 4:31.76.

Ethiopia is always to be respected in the middle-distance events, and both of their entrants, Lemlem Hailu Techane and Sindu Girma Sina have clocked 4:20 this season. Of the others, South African pair Nicole Louw and Lyndi Roelfse, who have run 4:21.44 and 4:22.62 respectively this season, pose the biggest threat to spoil the party for the hosts.

Cathal Dennehy for the IAAF