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Chepkoech crashes field to win steeple title

Beatrice Chepkoech made up for her blunder in the 2017 final to take the 3,000 metres steeplechase world title

NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 30 – World record holder Beatrice Chepkoech literally burnt down the field to clinch the 3,000m steeplechase world title in Doha on Monday, crushing the Championship Record after clocking 8:57.84.

Just as she did when breaking the world record in Monaco last year, Chepkoech literally burst out at the gun, maintaining a lead of almost 60m from start to finish as she made amends for her miss in 2017.

The reigning Diamond Trophy champion missed the hurdle at the 2017 event in London, ending up finishing out of the medal brackets with American Emma Coburn winning.

Coburn finished second in Doha after sprinting out in the final lap to set a new Personal Best time of 9:02.35. Germany’s Gesa Krause was third in a time of 9:03.30, a new National Record.

Hyvin Kiyeng, the champion in Beijing 2015 could not keep up with the punishing tempo and finished eighth with Celiphine Chespol dropping out of the race.

It was expected that the three Kenyan representatives would tackle the race as a team, but that was soon seen to be a facade with Chepkoech choosing to go out alone, Chespol and Kiyeng left out in the leading pack.

The pace was swift and Chepkoech completed the first 1,000m in 2:52.95 with the chasing pack left with tongues out trying to play catch up.

At the bell, she looked up to the screen above, seeing herself alone with a growing gap and she knew all was done.

It was now a fight for the other two medals, a chasing pack of five scrambling for silver and bronze.

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When it seemed Kiyeng was poised for the silver with Chespol long dropped out, the 2015 champion began to tire off and Coburn took advantage, striding forward to try and improve her own time.

Meanwhile, Kenya’s hopes of more medals in the 5,000m and 800m went flat out with Nicholas Kimeli and Jacob Krop falling off in the 5k while Eunice Sum wasn’t successful in the two lap race.

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