BIRMINGHAM, United Kingdom, Aug 6 – There is an old adage in athletics that success comes and goes in cycles!
Rightly so, Jackline Chepkoech won the 3000m Steeplechase gold at the ongoing Commonwealth Games in Birmingham to reclaim the title that Jamaica surprisingly won in the last edition.
She is now brimming over with new-found confidence after restoring Kenya’s hopes as Birmingham long distance antics continue to hit fever pitch.
The Kenyan athlete made up for Cellephine Chepsol, who had pulled out of the Birmingham extravaganza due to due injury picked up during training in the Club Games.
Chepkoech summoned willpower and strength to leave her track adversaries floundering.
But the 2021 World Under-20 Champion over the distance in Nairobi, did it in bravado, opening up the gap almost immediately in her peerless dash for gold that was a Games Record of 9: 15.68.
Competing only on her second senior event, Chepkoech beat Olympic Champion Perus Chemtai of Uganda who bagged silver.
“I didn’t expect to win gold. But when I took off, I considered how Kenyans have continued to struggle in this race recently, and I exploded,” Chemtai said, adding that her best is yet to come.
“I knew she (Chemtai) would be a hard nut to crack but I believed in myself and went for the kill. This was my second race in senior ranks and I am overly excited about it. So, it reached a point where I decided to attack,” Chepkoech, who her role model is double Olympic champion Faith Kipyegon said.
“I am chuffed. There is not so much to say for now, but it hasn’t sunk in yet. I will train well to continue winning. I dedicate it to my parents,” Chepkoech, who loves Ugali as her favorite meal told Capital Sport.