OLYMPICS 19 DAYS TO THE GAMES : Kenyan Great Fails to Make the Team
Ismail Kirui, a gold medalist in the 5,000 meters at the 1993 and 1995 World Championships, failed to make the Kenyan Olympic team after finishing eighth in 14 minutes, 10.41 seconds at the trials in Nairobi.
Tom Nyariki was the surprise winner of the 5,000 in 13:28.30. Paul Bitok, the silver medalist at the 1992 Barcelona Games, was second in 13:29.25.
This year’s Boston marathon champion, Moses Tanui, did not finish the 10,000-meter race. He pulled out before the halfway mark because of a left tendon injury.
The selection format adopted was the first two to place gain automatic selection while the third athlete is chosen through the wild-card system.
The 800 meters was won by Kenyan Air Force officer Philip Kibitok in 1:43.80, the fastest time on African soil and the second fastest in the world this year. William Tanui, the 1992 Olympic 800-meter champion, earned a team berth with a second-place finish in the 1,500 meters.
Three-time World Championship 3,000-meter steeplechase champion and world-record holder Moses Kiptanui (8:14.30) finished second to 1992 Olympic champion Mathew Birir (8:14.23) in that event. Tegla Loroupe, the two-time New York City Marathon champion, finished seventh in the 10,000 meters but was included on the team, along with race winner Sally Barsosio.