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Kenya, Russia waltz to 1-2-3 sweeps in steeplechase, long jump

Kenya, Russia waltz to 1-2-3 sweeps in steeplechase, long jump

Kenya _ 1-2-3. Russia _ 1-2-3.
Both countries pulled off rare sweeps of all the medal spots in two separate disciplines on Tuesday at the track and field world championships.
Kenya's men did it with a powerful display in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with the trio of Brimin Kipruto, Ezekiel Kemboi and Richard Kipkemboi Mateelong.
Russia cleaned up in the women's long jump with defending Olympic champion Tatiana Lebedeva winning in 7.03 meters. Ludmila Kolchanova took silver at 6.92, and Tatyana Kotova added bronze with 6.90.
Kenya got its moment early with Kipruto winning in 8 minutes, 13.82 seconds, perhaps aided by the absence of two-time champion Saif Saaeed Shaheen of Qatar, who was out with an Achilles tendon injury. Shaheen is also Kenya-born.
"We had a plan as a team to run together until the final 400 meters," Kipruto said. "I am so happy. It's the first time I won a gold medal. We will celebrate tonight as a team, as a country.
"When I saw I had already won, and my fellow Kenyans came in 1-2-3, I started celebrating."
Of course, the sweep would not have been possible without the final link.
"When I saw my colleagues in the front, I realized I still had the energy to complete the Kenyan sweep," the bronze medalist added. "We wanted to make the race a Kenyan affair, and we accomplished it."
For Lebedeva, this was just the beginning as she shoots for gold in the triple jump.
"There was a lot of pressure on me," Lebedeva said. "Tomorrow I have triple jump qualification and triple jump is more important for me. Long jump was kind of a warm-up for triple jump."


Updated : 2021-07-29 08:51 GMT+08:00