NAIROBI, Kenya, July 28- World Indoor silver medallist, Hellen Obiri and national record holder, Faith Chepng’etich were imperious in qualifying for the women 1500m at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games on Monday.
Obiri, bidding to add the Commonwealth title to the Worlds bronze she won last year in Moscow went out first and romped to victory in a Games Record 4:04.43, the fastest of the semis, to stay on course to retain the title won by Nancy Jebet Langat in Delhi four years ago.
She will have a fight on her hands to stop the former World Junior titleholder, Chepng’etich, who laid the hammer down to take the second semi in 4:05.79.
The illustrious pair will be joined by teammate Selah Busienei who clocked 4:08.85 for fourth in the second heat as Kenya retains the hopes of a podium sweep in Tuesday’s finals.
Defending Commonwealth champion, Mark Mutai, saw his defence collapse at the first hurdle when he could only muster a fourth finish in his heat after running 47.60.
Also crashing out was debutant Solomon Mbwoga (47.98) after slumping to fifth with national champion, Benson Mucheru, failing to show up for the start as Kenya surrendered the lap title won by Mutai in Delhi.
Kenya leads the track and field standings with two golds and three silver after Caleb Mwangangi and Filomena Cheyech took the honours in the men 5000m and women marathon as Isaiah Kiplangat, Caroline Kilel and Stephen Chemlany enjoyed a silver lining in the men 5000m, women marathon and men marathon in Day 1 of action on Sunday.
More to follow.