World champion over 1500 m Timothy Cheruiyot and Olympic champion over 3000 m obstacle course Advice from Kipruto were not featured in Kenya’s Olympic list after failing to finish in the top three of their races in their Olympic trials.
Cheruiyot was no worse than second in the 1500m in four years and has only lost three times since the beginning of 2018, according to Tilastopaja.org. But on Saturday in Nairobi he was immediately handed over for third place in the final and then allegedly hobbled into a medical tent.
Kipruto, the only runner to win the same individual race at the 2016 Olympics, 2017 World Championships and 2019 World Championships, retired in the early laps of the steeple on Saturday, according to a broadcast commentary. Kipruto has started three races since early 2020 and finished none of them.
In November 2019, Kipruto pleaded not guilty after being charged with sexual intercourse with a 15-year-old girl and released on bail. Kipruto faced at least 20 years in prison if convicted under Kenyan sexual offense laws. It is unclear where the case stands.
Athletics Kenya reportedly has discretion to pick someone outside of the top 3 for third and final place in an event. But the federation announced its Olympic team at the end of the exams, printed and tweeted the list without Cheruiyot or Kipruto.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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World champion over 1500 meters Timothy Cheruiyot limps to the medical tent. He finished fourth in the exams. The first two athletes from the entire male team, while the third athlete is selected by a selection committee. # Tokyo2020 pic.twitter.com/qbjq7C0cuUcu
– Lynne Wachira (@WachiraLynne) June 19, 2021