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Kenyans fail to dominate at Paris 20km race

Kenyan Alfred Cherop and John Njoki finished fourth and 5th respectively during the 40th edition of 20km De Paris road race ran on Sunday in Paris, France.

It was a rare show for Kenyan runners who failed to make it to the podium after falling to Eritrea’s Samuel Tsegay, Rwandese Felician Muhirita and homeboy Hassan Chahdi in the IAAF’s Silver Label road race.

Tsegay clocked 58:23 followed by Claude-Boxberger in (58:35) and Chaddi’s 59:51 for positions 1-3 respectively.

Tsegay, who was a last-minute entrant, made his move soon after 15 kilometres. He built a small lead over the Burundian, who wasn’t able to answer to the attack but maintained a good rhythm.

Tsegay, the 2014 world half marathon silver medallist, maintained his advantage to cross the line in 58:23. It was only his second race in 2018 following a 1:02:08 half marathon clocking in March.

Muhitira held on to take second place in 58:35, 12 seconds after the winner. Chahdi caught Belayinem in the closing stages of the race – the Ethiopian eventually dropped out – to wind up third in 59:51.

There were no to six Kenyan women in the race that was won by Ophélie Claude-Boxberger in her hom soil in 1:09:48 followed by Ethiopia’s Chaltu Dida in 1:09:57 and Liv Westphal of France completed the podium timing 1:11:10.

Liv Westphal, Samira Mezegrane-Saad, Ophélie Claude-Boxberger, Agnes Keino and Chaltu Dida passed five kilometres in 17:40. Keino then couldn’t sustain the pace and the quartet, spearheaded by Mezegrane-Saad, went through the halfway point in 34:56.

Claude-Boxberger’s victory also ended the 17-year drought of French success in the women’s race at the 20km de Paris.

Dida finished second in 1:09:57, as Westphal faltered in the waning stages to round out the podium in 1:11:10.

Leading results

Men

  1. Samuel Tsegay (ERI) 58:23
  2. Felician Muhitira (RWA) 58:35
  3. Hassan Chahdi (FRA) 59:51
  4. Alfred Cherop (KEN) 1:00:25
  5. John Njoki (KEN) 1:00:59

Women

  1. Ophélie Claude-Boxberger (FRA) 1:09:48
  2. Chaltu Dida (ETH) 1:09:57
  3. Liv Westphal (FRA) 1:11:10
  4. Samira Mezeghrane-Saad (FRA) 1:11:10
  5. Alice Finot (FA) 1:15:28

Source: IAAF.ORG

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