NAIROBI, Kenya, March 9 – Two-time World Cross junior champion Faith Chepng’etich and Africa Cross bronze medallist Alice Aprot, have been ruled out of IAAF World Cross Country championships in Guiyang, China after picking injuries at the team’s training camp in Kigari, Embu.
Athletics Kenya president, Isaiah Kiplagat confirmed their withdrawal from the women’s senior 8km squad despite head coach David Letting hoping Chepng’etich would recover from an ankle injury in time for the March 28 global showpiece.
“The team is doing very well; the only unfortunate thing is that Chepng’etich will not participate since she is injured as well as Aprot who pulled out for the same reasons.
“The women’s senior team is a little bit worrying because that means we have to replace them with those who finished seventh and eighth yet we don’t know their condition,” Kiplagat told Capital Sport.
Chepng’etich, the African senior titleholder left camp last Thursday and is currently receiving specialised treatment abroad while Aprot, who finished fifth at the women’s 8km National championships pulled out Saturday.
“Chepng’etich is okay we have sent her to Nairobi for assessment and we hope she will be back by Monday. Our prayer is that we get good results bearing in mind everybody will be coming to win,” Letting said on Friday.
Margaret Jelimo and Viola Kibiwott who were put on standby to replace the pair were set to report camp Monday.
Chepng’etich’s absence almost confirms Emily Chebet who was given a wildcard inclusion in the preliminary squad, will defend the World Cross title as Letting prepares to name his travelling party later this week.
Chebet, two-time world cross champion failed to make the cut at last month’s national trials in Nairobi as Chepg’etich dominated the star studded race ahead of reigning Africa cross winner Agnes Tirop and Janet Kisa.
Irene Chebet and Stacy Ndiwa are other senior women 8km athletes in camp.
Kenya will be out to defend her Bydgoszcz, Poland overall title where they beat rivals Ethiopia after bagging nine medals (5 gold, 3 silver and 1 bronze).