NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Prague Marathon winner Bornes Chepkirui says her
campaign to win a ticket to the World Championships may depend
on her performance at the Osaka International women’s marathon
Chepkirui will return to Osaka after she
posted a slow time back in 2015 when she was placed in position
14, clocking 2:41:47.
She has since evolved and will be the athlete to beat having
improved her best time to 2:24:19 from her Prague victory.
"It is a crucial year to me because we have the World
"I will run in Osaka and probable defend my title in Prague
"But the target is to get to the Kenya team and compete at
the Doha World Championships in Qatar in October," said
Kenya’s Eunice Jeptoo will also be back in the run after
failing to finish this race in last year’s contest.
The 36-year-old took more than six minutes off her best time
to win the recent Eindhoven Marathon in 2:26:13. However, the
two Kenyans should not expect a walk in the park.
They will be up against Ethiopian Sutume Asefa Kebede, who
has the best recent time among the internationals in the field
with a 2:24:00 in Dubai 2016.
Three other Africans are positioned at the 2:26 to 2:27
level, perfect to help pace the Japanese women along to marathon
Japan are using the race as part of its trials and qualifier
for the 2020 Olympic Games
Absent are last year’s debut winner Mizuki Matsuda but there
will be the 2016 winner Kayoko Fukushi, who will be running her
first marathon since the Rio Olympics.
There is also the duo of Tomomi Tanaka and Rei Ohara, who
went head-to-end until the final meters of the 2016 Nagoya
Ohara is already in for trials for Japan’s Olympic team while
China will have HE Yinli, who holds a fast time of 2:30:26 from
the 2017 race in Wuxi.