NAIROBI, Kenya, August 2 – World Champion Eunice Sum was in her own class as she gave Kenya her seventh gold after leading from gun to tape to cross the finish line in 2:00.31 to continue her ascendancy as the queen of two laps running.
Sum became the third Kenyan after Janeth Jepkosgei in 2006 and outgoing champion, Nancy Jebet Langat to bag the Commonwealth crown as she blew away the field in a commanding performance as the only Kenyan in the final as her mentor, the Melbourne titleholder, fell at the semis.
It was a majestic night for Kenya as the country bagged a gold and two silvers on the penultimate day of the track and field programme at the Glasgow Games to leapfrog Jamaica at the top on Athletics medal standings with 18 medals, 7 golds, 8 silvers and 3 bronze.
Sum was outstanding as she went straight in front after the gun to control the pace of the race watching on her strongest changers from Ugandan Winnie Nanyondo and New Zealand’s Angie Smit.
At the bell, the World Champion looked confident as she increased the pace to set a mark in the two laps race winning in her Club Games debut as Scots Lynsey Sharp scoped silver for the hosts in 2:01.34, four seconds ahead of Nanyondo who bagged bronze.
Kipsiro sets record to break Kenyans hearts
Meanwhile, Ugandan Moses Kipsiro entered into history books by becoming the first athlete to retain the men’s 10,000m title when he beat former World Junior champion, Josphat Bett on the line.
It was a sweet revenge for Kipsiro who was stripped off his 5000m title by Kenyan Caleb Ndiku as he came from behind to retain the crown in 27:56.11, just two seconds ahead of Bett.
Favourite Peter Kirui who led in the better part of the race failed to hold on, fading to fourth above compatriot Charles Cheruiyot.
In the absence of Olympic double champion Mo Farah, the three Kenyans were tipped to win the race and they showed that from the gun as they led the race in the first five laps before Cheruiyot dropped from the pack.
With three laps to go, Kirui who was competing in his second major championship for Kenya after the Worlds, opened the gap with Bett on his shoulders.
At the bell, New Zealand’s Jake Robertson mounted pressure as Kirui faded to allow Canadian Cameron Levins to close the gap that allowed Kipsiro to find his way from inside to see a three way battle for the line in the tight race, but it was the Ugandan who crossed the line first.
Earlier, track and field captain Julius Yego qualified to Saturday’s final after throwing 82.83m to top group B ahead of Austria’s Hamish Peacock.
Olympic champion Keshorn Walcott from Trinidad and Tobago also sailed through from group A after throwing a new record of 85.28m to set a fascinating final against Yego.
Elsewhere, the quartet of Walter Moenga, Calvin Nkanata, Tony Chirchir and Collins Omae were bundled out in the men’s 4x100m relay after finishing fourth as Trinidad and Tobago,Canada sailed through automatically.