Athletics Athletics

Rudisha dedicates Rio gold to Kenyans

David Rudisha reacts emotionally after successfully defending his 800m title. PHOTO/IAAF
David Rudisha reacts emotionally after successfully defending his 800m title. PHOTO/IAAF

NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 16- Just moments after racing to a second Olympic gold medal in the 800m in Rio de Janeiro, Brazi, world record holder David Rudisha has dedicated the win to his Kenyan fans and the country, paying tribute to the huge support he has received.

Rudisha had endured a tough period just after running the race of his life at the London Olympics in 2012, where he broke the record, battling injury and recovery from surgery to get back to shape.

“I dedicate this win to all my fans all over the world and above all to my country; Kenya. To all those who woke up at 4am to watch the race and for all your steadfast support throughout the years,” Rudisha posted on his official Facebook page after the race.

The World Champion and now double Olympic Champion had told Capital Sport prior to leaving for Rio that he was feeling in the best shape since 2013 and was ready to defend the title and ink his name in Olympics history.

After the race, Rudisha told reporters;

“Running 1:42, it’s just fantastic. I had no doubts before. It is great to win such a big competition, my second gold. It’s so great. I am so excited. It is the greatest moment of my career.”

Turning to the injury problems that have bedevilled him in recent seasons, Rudisha said: “It’s been very difficult. I have stayed focused and positive. My coach has been great and given me hope.”

Rudisha’s gold is Kenya’s second after marathoner Jemimah Sumgong made history on Sunday winning Kenya’s first ever Olympic gold medal in the women’s marathon.

Kenya now has five medals with Paul Tanui and  Vivian Cheruiyot having won silver in the men and women 10,000m while Hyvin Kiyeng won a silver as well in the women’s 3000m Steeplechase.