Kenya’s Ezekiel Kemboi won his third 3,000 metres steeplechase world title in convincing style at the World Athletics Championships in Moscow on Thursday August 15th.
The 31-year-old, two-time Olympic champion, timed eight minutes 06:01 seconds to take gold while compatriot Conseslus Kipruto took silver in 8:06.37 and France’s two-time Olympic silver medallist Mahiedine Mekhissi was third in 8:07.86. Paul Kipsiele Koech settle for fourth place in 8:08.62.
Kemboi, also a three-time world silver medallist, had taken the lead at the bell, but dropped back entering the back straight after being elbowed by team-mate Kipruto, who also signalled something was up as he raised his arm angrily.
Mekhissi made his move at that moment cruising into second, but just as it seemed he might finally get the better of his close friend Kemboi he stumbled on landing after the third-from-last steeple.
Kemboi saw his chance and went wide to pass the Frenchman and then Kipruto rounding the final bend.
“It is good to be the king. Oh, at the Olympics, it was just too cold,” said Kemboi after the race.
“Today, it was good for me to have the same hairstyle. I am wearing a t-shirt under my national gear with a dedication to the President of Kenya because this year we have elections in Kenya and I am supporting him. I do not know what my next aims could be, I have to get a rest and after the break I will see.”
The younger Kipruto, not hiding the rivarly and animosity between him and Kemboi says: “I am so disappointed. I can’t even talk”. We should expect fireworks then between the two at the remaining Diamond League meetings this season then.