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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Kenya Daniel Wanjiru targets New York Marathon as
track star Bernard Lagat makes marathon debut

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Former London Marathon champion Daniel Wanjiru has been added to the list of elite runners who will be competing at the New York Marathon on Nov 4.

Wanjiru has been a shadow of his former self this year as he failed to defend his crown in London, finishing seventh in a race that was won by Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge. However, the 2016 Amsterdam champion believes he has what it takes to claim his maiden New York Marathon title.

“I look forward to running with the champion Geoffrey Kamworor and other world champions. I have no pressure going into the race and that is huge bonus to me,” said Wanjiru on Friday from Embu.

The 26-year-old has a personal best time of 2:05:21, which he set in Amsterdam in 2016. He was a surprise winner in London when he clocked a time of 2:05:48 for victory ahead of Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele.

Boston Marathon bronze medalist Shadrack Biwott will also be trying to improve on his third place finish in New York.

However, the three Kenyans will be wary of their former countryman Bernard Lagat, who will be making his debut in the marathon.

“I first competed in New York in 2001 at the Millrose Games, and fell in love with the city on that trip. I have been back again and again, and now have eight Wanamaker Mile titles, five podium finishes at the Fifth Avenue Mile, and I set the United States 5000-meter indoor record there,” Lagat said.

“A few years ago, I was able to watch the TCS New York City Marathon from one of the lead vehicles, and I knew that when I ran a marathon someday, I wanted it to be in New York.”

             

 

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