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Kenya's three-time World Champion Ezekiel Kemboi is one of 16 nominees for the six available seats on the IAAF Athletes commission. 

The 3000m steeplechase expert has been named alongsideTwo-time Olympic and four-time world shot put champion Valerie Adams, Olympic bronze and world high jump silver medallist Mutaz Essa Barshim and two-time Olympic and three-time world pole vault champion Isinbayeva. Fabiana Murer and Blessing Okagbare are among other nominees.

To have been eligible for nomination, athletes must have participated in at least one of the past two editions of the IAAF World Championships, in the most recent Olympic Games or be a competitor at this year’s World Championships.

“Athletes are a vital pillar in sports and should remain at the heart of the decision-making process in all sport governing bodies,” said Frank Fredericks, chairman of the IAAF Athletes’ Commission.

“I have seen how the Athletes’ Commission has not only acted as a voice for athletes, but helped to provide improved opportunities to athletes. It is our sincere hope that the new team builds on the foundation that has been set by the current and past members.

“I wish all the 16 candidates all the best with the election process.”

All athletes accredited for next month’s World Championships in Beijing will have the right to vote in the elections which will take place between August 23-29 in the official team hotels. The results are set to be announced before the end of the championships and the six elected members of the commission will begin their mandate on January 1, 2016.

Nominees for the IAAF Athletes’ Commission

Valerie Adams (NZL)
Mehdi Baala (FRA)
Mutaz Essa Barshim (QAT)
Nataliya Dobrynska (UKR)
Michael Frater (JAM)
Jacques Frisch (LUX)
Yelena Isinbayeva (RUS)
Vanda Juhasz (HUN)
Ezekiel Kemboi (KEN)
Fabiana Murer (BRA)
Koji Murofushi (JPN)
Blessing Okagbare (NGR)
Christian Olsson (SWE)
Aliann Pompey (GUY)
Alina Talay (BLR)
Andreas Thorkildsen (NOR)

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Olympic champion David Rudisha will be out for a fourth victory when he lines up at the 9th IAAF Diamond League stop in Lausanne, Switzerland Thursday night.

The Kenyan who has suffered a fair share of injuries since his breathtaking world record-breaking victory in the 800m at the London Olympics says he is nearing his best 1:40.91 in the two-lap race.

Injury-raven

"I have had worst times since 2012, struggling from one injury to another.  It has not been easy to be honest, but what doesn't kill you makes you stronger;" said the 26-year-old who was forced out of the 2013 World Championships in Moscow through injury.

All eyes will be on Rudisha, and whether he will attempt to break the 1:42.61 meeting record at the Stade de la Pontaise course, currently held by Kenyan-born Dane Wilson Kipketer.

“The weather needs to be good, I believe we are in good shape for 1:42 something. But we need good weather. Even 1:42.50 is not easy to achieve. But why not?” he said.

Strong field

Rudisha said that the increased rivalry in the 800m was only for the good.“I believe my friends, like (Ethiopian) Mohammed Aman, we will be there, and we will push each other to the end,” he said.

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It was an eventful evening for Kenyan athletes as they converged at the 40th edition of Athletissima Diamond League meet in Lausanne, Thursday.

Olympic champion and world record-holder David Rudisha looked on course to follow up his victory in New York with a win in Lausanne, despite a strong field that had Ethiopian Mohammed Aman and Nijel Amos of Botswana.

Customary front run 

The tall, powerful Kenyan had taken his familiar place at the front once the pacemaker had dropped away on the second lap and he entered the straight having distanced himself from all his opposition – save for the determined little figure of the man who followed him home to take silver at the London 2012 Olympics, Nijel Amos.

The Botswanan athlete, gritting his teeth with the effort, moved up to Rudisha halfway down the straight, and as he did so an anxious glance back from the champion whose past two years have been blighted by a succession of injuries was the giveaway sign that the race would go to Amos.

His winning time was a season’s best of 1:43.27, with Rudisha clocking 1:43.76 and third place going to his fellow Kenyan Ferguson Rotich Cheruiyot, who recorded 1:44.44.

The pace proved too hot for Ethiopia’s world indoor and outdoor champion Mohammed Aman, who was eighth in 1:46.03.

Nyambura steals the show

Emma Coburn of the United States led for most of the second half of the 3000m steeplechase, but as the bell went she found two African opponents moving past her, with Kenya’s Virginia Nyambura leading the way ahead of Ethiopia’s Hiwot Ayalew.

The Kenyan maintained her form to the line, which she crossed in a meeting record of 9:16.99, with Ayalew finishing in 9:17.22 and Coburn settling for third in 9:20.67.

Ndiku Stumbles

Olympic Champion Mo Farah waited patiently before moving into the lead at the bell, but the taller figure of Ethiopian 17-year-old Yomif Kejelcha loomed behind him as Kenyan Commonwealth Games champion Caleb Ndiku who was chasing the lead pack stumbled hard on the track and was dropped out of contention. 

He however produced another electric burst to regain the lead before producing a final flourish which appeared to have dissipated an awful lot of angst and frustration. Helped by a 54.4-second final lap, Farah won in 13:11.77 as Kejelcha was second in 13:12.59.

Farah was returning to competition for the first time since pulling out of last month’s IAAF Diamond League meeting in Birmingham, but he showed no signs of tiredness in Lausanne.

Julius Yego finished 4th in the men’s javelin which was won by Trinidadian Keshorn Walcott who broke the meeting record with 90.16m.

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Double Olympic champion, Mo Farah, says drug cheat claims are "killing him" and has urged his coach Alberto Salazar to swiftly disprove the allegations. 

Allegations were made against Salazar in a BBC Panorama programme made in collaboration with US journalism organisation ProPublica, notably that he was involved in doping US runner Galen Rupp, training partner of Farah’s, in 2002 at the Nike Oregon Project in Oregon.

There is no suggestion Farah has broken any rules, but the media storm has plagued the double Olympic champion, forcing his withdrawal from the Diamond League in Birmingham three weeks ago.

Mo Farah

Farah, in an interview with Sky Sports, reiterated that he was "100 per cent clean" but insisted he would reverse the decision to stick by his coach if there was any truth in the allegations.

"If more people come out and it’s proven that he’s crossed the line then I’ll be the first person to come out," Farah told Jim White of Sky Sports News.

"I work every day and every year I spend seven months away from my family. I miss my kids’ birthdays and those are times I will never be able to go back on and share with them. That kills me.

"To be labelled a cheat – it’s not fair. If I’m a cheat then prove I’m a cheat or just leave me alone and let me do what I do best.

"That’s to run and represent my country and make my country proud. There were 75,000 people at the London (Olympics) cheering me on and shouting my name. I will never let them down but people need to know the truth."

Salazar to answer

The 32-year-old Somalia-born athlete described how his mental state forced his withdrawal from the recent Diamond League meeting in the UK and how he opted to confront Salazar face-to-face in the United States.

"These allegations are about him and not me," Farah added. "He needed to come out publicly and tell the people. I need Salazar to answer these questions.

“I wanted answers as an athlete. I work so hard for what I do. It’s taken me half of my life to achieve what I have. For people to think I’ve taken a short cut, it’s not right and it’s not fair.

He continued

"This picture has been painted of me. I’m 100 per cent clean. I put my body through hell. I run 120 miles a week, week in week out. I love what I do and I want to continue to win medals and I want people to know I’m 100 per cent clean.

"I believe in him. But it’s no point in me just believing him. He needs to prove it to the public. I’m glad the UK Anti-Doping agency (UKADA) and the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) are going into this investigation."

Farah is hoping to compete in the 5,000m at the Diamond League meeting in Lausanne on July 9, and he is also due to run in Monaco on July 17 as well as at the Sainsbury's Anniversary Games at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on July 24-26.

 

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In-form Justin Gatlin beat Asafa Powell and Tyson Gay on his way to winning the 100m at the 40th edition of Athletissima Diamond League meet Thursday.

The American clocked 9.75 seconds, the joint second-fastest time of 2015, leaving Powell and Gay to finished second and third with both running 9.92 in Lausanne.

It was Gatlin’s 26th successive sprint victory as he continues reaching peak level ahead of next month’s Beijing World Athletics Championships.

Usain Bolt

The 2004 Olympic 100m gold medallist and 2005 double world 100m champion said: "I used this as a semi-finals and Monaco (next week) will be a final, then I'll go home and get ready for the world championships," said Gatlin.

"No disrespect, I went into the race not thinking about my opponents, I just wanted to execute my phases. "I had a traditional fast start, tried to dominate through the middle and carried on through to the finish line and that's what I did.

"There's no message to Usain, I just go out there and try and dominate."

Farah returns

Olympic champion Mo Farah of Britain won the 5,000 meters in his first race since his American coach Alberto Salazar faced doping allegations last month.

Farah approached the finish line punching his chest twice with his right fist and waved his arms wildly as he crossed in 13:11.77.

"This victory is also a way to answer some of the critics regarding my coach that came out lately," said Farah, who was not implicated in the allegations that Salazar has denied.

Farah was among five 2012 London Olympic gold medalists who won Thursday, with two showing great form.

Anna Chicherova of Russia cleared a world-leading 2.03 meters in the high jump while in the men's javelin, Keshorn Walcott set a Trinidad and Tobago record of 90.16 meters.

Olympic champion Allyson Felix of the U.S. won the women's 200 meters in 22.09, while Shaunae Miller of Bahamas clocked a personal-best 49.92 in the 400 to become the second-fastest woman in the world this year.

Impressive Nyambura

Other meet records were set by German shot putter David Storl's 22.20-meter effort and Virginia Nyambura of Kenya's 9:16.99 run in the women's 3,000 steeplechase.

 Christian Taylor of the U.S. won a high-class triple jump with 18.06 meters.

Do you think Gatlin will beat Bolt at the World Athletics Championships in Beijing? Leave your comments below or talk to us on Twitter: @Four4TwoMedia

 

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Far from being distracted, Julius Yego says fatherhood has given him fresh incentive to become the first Kenyan to win a field medal at the IAAF World Championships set for Beijing in August.

The ‘Youtube Man’ who returned to Kenya on Tuesday to a kingly welcome says the birth of his now three-month old son, Jarvis Kiptoo, has not altered or hindered his preparations for the season but pushed him to aim higher.

The Commonwealth champion has improved his 2013 Personal Best throw of 85.4m in three successive meetings at Ostrava (86.88), Rome Golden Gala (87.71) and even a 91.39m milestone in Birmingham that broke three records; national record, African record, and Diamond League meeting record.

Red Carpet Return

“I am pushed by new responsibilities, I want to be the best, the desire is there and I thank God for the energy,” said Yego upon returning to the country on Tuesday to a red carpet reception led by his wife Sincy and Son Jarvis.

“It will not be a surprise to see a Kenyan winning Javelin at the World Championships, after all, who expected me to throw over 91m in Birmingham?,” he pondered.

“My main aim is being in the medal bracket. I need to go back and train on the technique I used in Rome and Birmingham and if my legs will be in good shape during the final of World Championships, I will give it a go.

“We still have a long season to go until the main competition in Beijing; of course, many people will come with the mind that Yego is the man to beat but in sport you have to be ready for anything. For me, I’m always a winner and not a loser,” he concluded.

@Amokc1001 

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