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December 12, 2018

Kenyan duo axed: Cheruiyot and Korir fall off top five list for the IAAF Awards as Kipchoge soldiers on

IAAF Diamond League 1,500m title holder Timothy Cheruiyot / COURTESY
IAAF Diamond League 1,500m title holder Timothy Cheruiyot / COURTESY
IAAF Diamond League 1,500m title holder Timothy Cheruiyot and world 800m leader Emmanuel Korir are out of contention for the IAAF Male Athlete of the Year, leaving world marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge as the only Kenyan contender.
Cheruiyot recorded world-leading marks of 3:28.41 for 1,500m and 3:49.87 for the mile while winning nine of his 11 races at those distances last season. He is also a silver medallist from both the Commonwealth Games and African Championships.
Meanwhile, Korir won all but one of his races this year. He started 2018 by clocking a world-leading African indoor record of 1:44.21 in what was his only indoor race of the year. He went on to produce the fastest outdoor time of the year too, winning at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in London in 1:42.05, the world’s fastest 800m performance since 2012. The Kenyan won at the IAAF Diamond League final and at the IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018.
He also recorded a 400m PB of 44.21, placing him sixth on the world list in that event. With the two already out, the onus is left on Kipchoge whose credentials include victory at the London Marathon in April and Berlin marathon in August, where he erased Dennis Kimetto’s record. Kipchoge’s world mark of 2:01:39 is the biggest improvement on a men’s world record since 1967. He will battle it out with United States’ sprinter, Christian Coleman, who is the world indoor 60m record holder, world leader over 100m and the IAAF Diamond League champion in his specialty.
Sweden’s Armand Duplantis is also in contention following a stellar year, where he won the European championships in pole vault with a world-leading height. He is also the world U-20 champion and has eight world U20 records or bests in both indoor and outdoors.  Frenchman Kevin Mayer also hope to lift the coveted title as he boosts of a world indoor heptathlon title and a world decathlon record. Abderrahman Samba of Qatar also has a chance to win the title with a world lead and unbeaten run in nine finals at 400m hurdles and having set the world’s quickest time since 1992. He is a Asian Games champion at 400m hurdles and 4x400m, IAAF Continental Cup title and is also an Asian indoor 4x400m champion.
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