(Xinhua) -- Kenyan Daniel Wanjiru is not intimidated
by the challenge of running against a daunting field at the
Virgin London Marathon in April after being named in the elite
men’s line-up for the 2017 edition on Monday.
Speaking from his training base in
central Kenya, Wanjiru, who smashed the Amsterdam Marathon
course record last October where he led his compatriots to
occupy the first nine places, is aiming at making the podium on
his World Marathon Majors debut.
“I will be competing in a Majors race
for the first time and my plan is to run as Wanjiru and I
shall not fear those who have more experience than I have,
the athlete declared,” the athlete declared.
“I went on with my training after
Amsterdam and my aim is to lower my personal best in London
and I’m hoping to have a good race. My body has been
Wanjiru, a father of two has been
designated as a dark horse in the towering field having blasted
to 2:05:19 at the Amsterdam Marathon to set tongues wagging
especially after beating two-time Chicago runner-up Sammy
Kitwara (2:05:45) and Marius Kimutai (2:05:47) to the tape.
His performance drew parallels with
the late Beijing 2008 Olympics champion and 2009 London winner,
Samuel Wanjiru, with whom he shares a name when he unfolded
similar front-running tactics to win the IAAF Gold Label Race at
the Dutch city.
“I want to run as well as Wanjiru did
in London. He remains a motivation in training,” the
Amsterdam winner added.
Kenyan Olympics, two-time winner and
defending champion Eliud Kipchoge will not return to London
leaving Ethiopian giant Kenenisa Bekele who missed the world
record by six seconds in Berlin last fall is the rank favourite.
Wanjiru is included in the Kenyan
charge that also includes London 2012 Olympics silver medallist
and two-time world champion, Abel Kirui last year’s runners-up
Stanley Biwott as well as World Cross and World Half silver
winner, Bedan Karoki who will make his debut over the distance.