Silas Kiplagat after striking Commonwealth 1500m gold (Getty Images) © Copyright
General News 19 June 2011 – Nairobi, Kenya

Kiplagat lives up to headline role at Kenyan Prisons champs

Nairobi, KenyaCommonwealth 1500m champion Silas Kiplagat executed his headline role to perfection while Africa 400m Hurdles bronze winner Maureen Jelagat stole the show as the Kenya Prisons Inter Divisional Championships ended in Nairobi on Saturday (18).

In other highlight results at the two day track and field meeting at Nyayo National Stadium that hosted the 2010 African Athletics Championships twice World Marathon champion Catherine Ndereba finished third in the women’s 5000m as Beijing Olympics finalist Thomas Longosiwa was eclipsed in the corresponding men’s race.

Guest runner Kenneth Kipkemoi, earned recruitment to Prisons stunned the officers in the men’s 10,000m with African Cross Country senior champion John Mwangangi among his high profile casualties.

There was also a winning return for former national and Prisons champion Elizabeth Muthuka who struck gold in the women’s 200m in addition to silver in her lap-race speciality.

Kiplagat defends, targets Daegu

Fresh from playing the bridesmaid at the Prefontaine Classic Samsung Diamond League meeting on 4 June, Commonwealth champion and last year’s fastest metric miler (3:29.27) Silas Kiplagat was naturally the main event at the Prisons championships.

After easily winning his heat to qualify for the finals on Friday, Kiplagat rarely engaged second gear to edge out the main threat, Fredrick Musyoki (former African junior silver winner) with the Delhi gold medallist taking the race in 3:39.2 against 3:40.0.

Dominic Mutuku (3:40.1) was not far behind in third as he played his part in a frenetic finish.

“At the moment, the runners to watch in the race for the Kenyan ticket for Daegu are Haron Keitany (winner in Eugene), Asbel Kiprop (Olympic champion) and Nixon Chepseba (world leader). I’m confident I will be in the form I was last year when the Trials come,” the winner stated.

“I will compete in two meetings before then and if I earn selection in the team, I will discuss with the national team officials to see whether I can run in another two before Daegu,” he added with none of the cockiness attached to him last year visible.

Jelagat rules the meet

Although Kiplagat stole the headlines, the meet certainly belonged to Maureen Jelagat, who won the third medal at last year’s Africa showpiece at the same stadium.

She caused a stir in the 400m when she stopped former national champion, Elizabeth Muthuka, who recently returned to action and how! With a 53.5 victory against 56.4 as Pamela Cheuno (58.4) finished third.

Jelagat clinched the double when she claimed the women’s 100m Hurdles in 15.4 and reserved her best for her 400m Hurdles race when in 58.9, made runner-up Vanice Oguti (65.9) and Grace Wanjiku (69.9) look like spectators as she defended her title from last year.

“She has picked form at the right time and now the focus is to help her gain qualification time for Daegu,” national and Prisons sprints coach, Stephen Mwaniki said of the hat-trick winner.

Ndereba says she still has the legs

With almost a decade and a half of hard road running that has taken her legs to two World titles and a similar number of Olympics silver medals in the Marathon, Catherine Ndereba, the former World record holder still believes she has a last hooray before hanging her spikes.

“I did not get the chance to go for a third world Marathon title in Daegu but I will still try to compete for a ticket on the track. If that does not work out, there is still the fall Marathon season to look forward to,” Ndereba, who has stepped up training since injury ruled her out of April’s Boston Marathon, said.

Ndereba, 38, still proved she has the legs as she claimed bronze in the women’s 5000m with the timer reading 16:48.8 to trail Nancy Nzisa (16:28.4) and Merceline Ondiek (16:36.6) who took the first two positions across the line.

Kipkemoi arrests officers

Like any other institutional championships, the annual Prisons track and field selection meet attracts a fair share of budding runners seeking an alternative route to disciplined forces recruitment.

One, Kenneth Kipkemoi, fulfilled his dream when he won the first major final of the event, the men’s 10,000m, in 28:06.6 after detaching himself from the field with five laps to go. Joseph Birech (28:42.2) and Charles Cheruiyot (28:42.8) completed the podium.

The excited Kipkemoi expressed his delight at earning recruitment to the Prisons saying, “This was my wish and today, it has come to reality.”

He was duly selected in the Prisons team for the national championships and thereafter, conscription to service will follow.

Seeds find their match

Olympics finalist Thomas Pkemei Longosiwa who was 12th (13:55.3) was relegated to third in the men’s 5000m as Jonathan Komen (13:39.8) and Timothy Kiptoo (13:44.0) taking gold and silver.

Defending champion Reuben Bett, who caused a minor sensation last year at the European circuit was dethroned by Isaac Kibet who raced 1:47.1 for victory with the deposed titleholder coming second in 1:47.6.

Stephen Baraza, a hopeful for the Daegu 4X400m relay squad was knocked off his perch in the men’s 400m as Vincent Kosgei (46.5) and Moses Kertich (46.9), his perennial challengers in the Prisons ranks claimed his scalp. The defending champion took bronze in 47.5.

Districts and provincials next up

With the Administration Police having held their selection event for the nationals on Tuesday and Wednesday, the conclusion of the Prisons event will usher in the districts and provincials in the next fortnight as Kenya’s protracted journey to the IAAF World Championships in Athletics in Daegu South Korea (27 August to 4 September) gathers pace.

Mutwiri Mutuota (Capital FM) for IAAF

Leading Results (All hand timed):



1. Ibrahim Muiya 10.4

2. Wellington Nyakundi 10.7

3. L Simatwa 10.8


1. Wellington Nyakundi 21.3

2. Kennedy Chepsigor 22.0

3. Washington Nyakundi 22.3


1. Vincent Kosgei 46.5

2. Moses Kertich 46.9

3. Stephen Barasa 47.5


1. Isaac Kipketer 1:47.1

2. Reuben Bett 1:47.6

3. Edwin Kiprop 1:47.8


1. Silas Kiplagat 3:39.2

2. Fredrick Musyoki 3:40.0

3. Dominic Mutuku 3:40.1


1. Jonathan Komen 13:39.8

2. Timothy Kiptoo 13:44.0

3. Thomas Longosiwa 13:55.3


1. Kenneth Kipkemoi 28:06.6

2. Joseph Birech 28:42.2

3. Charles Cheruiyot 28:42.8

3000m steeplechase

1. Patrick Churkor 8:42.3

2. Peter Matheka 8:54.2

3. Kenneth Kiplagat 9:01.0

110m Hurdles

1. Samuel Korir 15.2

2. Denis Kimeu 15.8

3. Geoffrey Mabwi 16.4

400m Hurdles

1. Vincent Kosgei 50.8

2. Denis Kimeu 53.5

3. Geoffrey Mabwi 56.3

10km Race Walking

1. Silvanus Wekesa 42:05.4

2. Eric Shikuku 43:08.0

3. David Munyao 45:17.0

4. Patrick Irungu 46:13.7



1. Damaris Imbogo 12.2

2. Marcelah Nyaboke 12.4

3. Regina Mulatya 12.6


1. Elizabeth Muthuka 24.9

2. Damaris Imbogo 25.6

3. Damaris Mbula 25.9


1. Maureen Jelagat 53.5

2. Elizabeth Muthuka 56.4

3. Pamela Cheuno 58.4


1. Sylvia Chesebe 2:05.7

2. Tabitha Wambui 2:07.2

3. Grace Wanjiku 2:20.4


1. Tabitha Wambui 4:20.4

2. Sylvia Chesebe 4:25.3

3. Jane Mwikali 4:26.3


1. Jane Mwikali 16:28.4

2. Alice Mogire 16:36.6

3. Catherine Ndereba 16:48.8


1. Pauline Wangui 33:19.0

2. Alice Mogire 33:35.8

3. Ruth Kutol 33:43.0

3000m steeplechase

1. Nancy Nzisa 10:37.0

2. Marceline Ondiek 10:40.7

3. Nancy Maiyo 10:56.2

100m Hurdles

1. Maureen Jelagat 15.4

2. Margaret Indanyi 17.1

3. Regina Mulatya 18.0

400m Hurdles

1. Maureen Jelagat 58.9

2. Vanice Oguti 65.9

3. Grace Wanjiku 69.9

10km Race Walking

1. Ann Kathigi 58:14.5

2. Rose Chepkosgei 59:45.0

3. Joyce Akoth 59:45.5