This is Norah Jeruto's first gold medal in world senior championships and Kazakhstan's first-ever title at the Athletics World Championships. The performance is signed by a former Kenyan who, after winning the U18 world 2000m steeplechase title for her home country in 2011, changed nationality to Kazakhstan last year. She suddenly joins the camp of athletes who continue to deprive Africa of its best talents.
In this historic final where the top three set times in less than nine minutes, Jeruto (8'53''02) beat the Ethiopian African champion Werkuha Getachew (8'54''61 with a national record) and her compatriot Mekides Abebe (8'56''08). These times place them fourth and fifth respectively behind Jeruto on the world all-time list.
With these two new medals, Africa currently counts 6 Gold, 7 Silver and 4 Bronze.
This day 6, however, allowed Africa to look to the future with optimism in Eugene. Eleven Africans including 4 Kenyans, 3 Algerians, 3 Moroccans, 1 Ethiopian and 1 Tunisian qualified for the men's 800m final. Algeria’s Slimane Moula (1'44''90') achieved the 5th best time in semi-finals. Morocco’s Elhassane Moujahid, Moad Zahafi and Abdelati El Guesse played well their part. Elhassane Moujahid finished 2nd in the first qualifying heat with a time of 1'49''27 ahead of the Spaniard Álvaro De Arriba (1'49''30'). Kenya’s Emmanuel Kipkurui Korir won the heat clocking 1:49.05. In the third heat, Moad Zahafi won ahead of his competitors with a time of 1'46''15, followed by French Gabriel Tual (1'46''34) and Kenya’s Emmanuel Wanyonyi (1'46''45). Abdelati El Guesse, 3rd at the last qualifying heat, achieved a time of 1'45''25).
Africa will also be well represented in the women's 5000m final with six athletes on the starting line on the night from Saturday to Sunday July 24. They are Kenya’s Beatrice Chebet, Margaret Kipkemboi, Gloriah Kite and the Ethiopia’s Letesenbet Gidey, Dawit Seyaum and Gudaf Tsegay.
Botswana’s Bayapo Ndori and South Africa’s Wayde Van Niekerk well negotiated the men's 400m semi-finals. Bayapo Ndori, 23, finished second, with a time of 44.94. Van Niekerk also ranked second in his heat with a time of (44''74). Isaac Makwala who was competing in the same heat as the South African was eliminated in these semi-finals.
The day 7 of the "Eugene World championships", in the night from Thursday to Friday July 22, will be marked by the 200m finals for women and men. Africa will be there with Liberia’s Joseph Fahnbulleh (second in his semi-final with a time of 19''92) and South Africa’s Luxolo Adams (20''09). Africa will have to rely only on Niger’s Aminatou Seyni in the women's final, whose best time in Eugene is 21''98.
Hugues Fabrice ZANGO (Burkina Faso) in the Triple Jump and Julius YEGO (Kenya) in Javelin will enter the race to seek a visa for the final.
Program of the day
Thursday July 21 (Friday UCT)
12h05 a.m. (Friday) : Men’s Javelin Qualifications
12h10 a.m: women’s 800 m Heat
01h10 a.m: Men’s 5.000 m Heat
01h20 a.m: Men’s triple Jump Qualifications
02h00 a.m: Men’s 800 m semi final
02h35 a.m: women’s 200 m final
02h50 a.m.: Men’s 200 m Final