NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenyan female runners Edna
Kiplagat and Betsy Saina will have little respect for
each other as they line up in Japan for the Marugame
Half Marathon on Sunday.
Zersenay Tadese of Eritrea head the men’s and women’s
Kenyan runners face a dry run as they are due to meet at
the Boston marathon course in April and are using the
race in Japan to gauge their fitness.
doing long runs and cross country since December and
this will be the first serious competition for me,” said
Kiplagat. “I have to see what shape my body is in before
I adjust ahead of the Boston marathon in April.”
former two-time world marathon champion, and Saina are
the standout names in the women’s race along with Sara
Hall from the United States.
who last year earned the silver medal in the marathon at
the IAAF World Championships just three months before
turning 38, will also be making her Marugame debut. In
December she was crowned the World Marathon Majors
champion pocketing 500,000 US dollars.
Kayoko Fukushi, a three-time winner in Marugame, is also
in the field, along with compatriots Michi Numata and
In the men’s
race, Eritrea’s world half marathon record-holder
Zersenay Tadese heads the entry-list. Tadese will face a
line-up including Japan based Kenyan Bernard Kimani
(60:05) and Japanese record-holder Yuta Shitara (60:17).
The Kagawa Marugame Half Marathon is an IAAF Silver
Label road race.
Eritrean, a five-time world half marathon champion, set
the world record of 58:23 back in 2010 and will be
competing in Marugame for the first time in his long and
distinguished career. He will face the likes of Kenyan
quartet Bernard Kimani, Dominic Kiptarus, Wilson Kiprono
Too and Moses Kibet.
who were overlooked in the selection of the World Half
Marathon team in Valencia, Spain on March 24, will put
everything on the line as they seek to tame their
will be hoping that national record-holder Yuta Shitara,
or indeed compatriots Kenta Murayama and Keijiro Mogi,
will become the first Japanese athletes in 12 years to
win the men’s race in Marugame.
former champion Abraham Kiplimo from Uganda (2:09:23)
will be looking to regain his title in the Beppu-Oita
Marathon on Sunday in Japan. The line-up also includes
Kenya’s Josphat Leting (2:09:34) while Hayato Sonoda
(2:10:40) and Taiga Ito (2:10:52) are among the top home
runners in action.