KOSGEI AND KIPCHOGE MARK MOMENTOUS WEEKEND OF ROAD RUNNING

Two days, two 42.195km runs, two barriers broken – but two very different circumstances.

On Saturday morning in Vienna, Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge produced the fastest time ever for the marathon distance with a 1:59:40.2 clocking at the Ineos159 Challenge, an unofficial time trial event that had been orchestrated to see if a human was capable of covering the marathon distance within two hours.

Brigid Kosgei
© AFP/Getty Images

About 30 hours later, fellow Kenyan Brigid Kosgei crossed the finish line at the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in 2:14:04, taking 81 seconds off the longest-standing marathon world record – men’s or women’s – in the modern era.

For several years, many people believed that the two barriers – 2:00:00 for men and 2:15:25 for women – would stand the test of time. But in recent years the world’s top marathon runners have closed in on those marks as the overall standard of road running continues to rise.

© AFP / Getty Images

“We always knew the time would come when the record would be broken,” said Paula Radcliffe, whose world record of 2:15:25 had stood since 2003.

“I can tell people that no human is limited,” said Kipchoge after his run. “It shows the positivity of sport. I want to make the sport an interesting sport whereby all human beings can run and together we can make this world a beautiful world.”

KOSGEI SMASHES MARATHON WORLD RECORD IN CHICAGO

Completing a sensational weekend of road running, Brigid Kosgei broke the world record* at the Chicago Marathon on Sunday (13), winning the IAAF Gold Label road race in 2:14:04.

Kosgei’s run came little more than 24 hours after fellow Kenyan Eliud Kipchoge became the first man to cover 26.2 miles within two hours, clocking 1:59:41 in Vienna. Unlike Kipchoge’s performance, though, Kosgei’s mark was set in an official race on a record-eligible course.

Kosgei, who won in Chicago last year in 2:18:35 and improved her PB to 2:18:20 to win in London earlier this year, set out at a blisteringly fast pace, covering the first 5km in 15:28. Ethiopia’s Ababel Yeshaneh was dragged through the section in a swift 15:36 with Gelete Burka a further 27 seconds in arrears.

Her pace dropped slightly after that initial enthusiasm but the 25-year-old settled into regular 16-minute splits for each five-kilometre segment. She went through 10km in 31:28, 2:12:26 marathon pace, and 15km in 47:26. At that point she was almost a minute ahead of Yeshaneh, who herself was on schedule for a 2:16:00 finish at that point.

Kosgei’s half-way split of 1:06:59 suggested a finishing time of about 2:14:00. Fewer than five kilometres later, her lead over Yeshaneh had grown to two minutes, reaching 25km in 1:19:33. As she continued to run behind two male pacemakers, Kosgei added another minute to her lead thanks to a 15:45 split between 25km and 30km.

Another sub-16-minute five-kilometre segment followed, this time 15:56, and her 35km split (1:51:14) still indicated a finishing time about a minute inside Paula Radcliffe’s world record of 2:15:25, set 16 years ago. Given the speed she was going and how far into the race she was, she looked relatively comfortable too.

Nearly four-and-a-half minutes behind, Yeshaneh had a 33-second margin over Burka but both women were also on course for a personal best.

Brigid Kosgei
© AFP/Getty Images

The race, though, was all about Kosgei’s world record attempt and she showed no signs of fading in the closing stages. The pace makers peeled away before the final two miles as Kosgei forged on alone.

With about 20 seconds left of running, she couldn’t help but smile as she realised the magnitude of what she was about to achieve. Moments later, she crossed the line in 2:14:04 to take 81 seconds off the longest-standing marathon world record – men’s or women’s – in the post-war era.

Lawrence Cherono, winner of this year’s Boston Marathon, won a close men’s contest in 2:05:45. Ethiopia’s Dejene Debela was second in 2:05:46 and Asefa Mengstu was third in 2:05:48.

More to follow…

*pending the usual ratification procedure

Kanu International Football Academy Strikes Gold In Yobe State

Kanu International Football Academy in a statement released Wednesday from its ongoing national camp in Ibadan, have disclosed its discovery of a rare gem in youngster Mamman Sani Musa.

According to the obviously elated head coach of KIFA, Babatunde Odubola, the 17 years old lad from Potiskum local government in Yobe state is immensely gifted and possesses untold qualities rarely seen in players his age.

“I am proud to announce to the world that KIFA has discovered ‘gold’ in Yobe state. Who would ever believe that such a talented lad could be discovered in that part of Nigeria. And credits to KIFA because it is in line with our mantra that ‘a ball can change our world’.

Mamman Sani Musa

” Mamman, is a young, strong and gifted midfielder with commanding presence in the middle of the park. As an experienced youth coach with credits of discoveries of top quality players from the grassroots, I am confident that this lad would go on to do great things in football,” Odubola, a former coach of 3SC enthused confidently.

Akeem Busari

Lagos SWAN Calls For Thorough Investigation Of Members’ Harassment By Nigerian Police

The Lagos State Chapter of the Sports Association of Nigeria (Lagos SWAN) has called on the leadership of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) to investigate the illegal detention of one of its members, Yomi Kuku alongside 22 others by its officers from Area F Police Command.

The Lagos State SWAN Chairman, Debo Oshundun who made the call on the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, said the illegal detention of one of its members is a direct attack on the sporting press.

According to reports already published by The Nation Newspaper, Kuku who on Friday night at Sidewalk Bar along Obafemi Awolowo Road was harassed and physically assaulted by armed policemen led by ACP Akinbayo Soji who came in a vehicles belonging to the Lagos State Taskforce on the Environment.

Debo Oshundun, Lagos SWAN Chairman

Oshundun while decrying the illegal detention wondered why law abiding citizens who were relaxing on a Friday night after a hard week could be harassed by men of the NPF who were meant to be protecting them.

“It is so unfortunate that such ugly incident happened to one of our members. As law abiding citizens and members of SWAN legally affiliated to the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), we call on the Inspector General of Police and the Lagos State Police Command to investigate this ugly situation.”

Speaking further, Oshundun said, “The illegal raiding, arrest and detention of members of the public has been going on for the past 3 weeks. This particular incident is seen as a direct assault on the apex sports writing association in Nigeria.

It was also alleged that the same commander and his men had a brush with some Honourable Members of the Lagos State House of Assembly.

The Lagos SWAN Chairman said there is need to stem the ugly tide of harassment and detention of members of the public over frivolous charges

2019 EKITI BET9JA FOOTBALL LEAGUE: EKITI AGOG FOR FINALS

There is so much buzz and unprecedented excitement among football fans and stakeholders in Ekiti state, as the state FA conclude plans for the final phase of 2019 Ekiti State Bet9ja Football League.

Addressing a well attended press conference at the Oluyemi Kayode Stadium Ado Ekiti, Chairman, Organising committee, who doubles as representative of the sponsor, Mr Olabayo Badmos said everything has been put in place to ensure a successful final phase.

He explained that some innovations have been added to the finals, including filing out of kids with the players as escorts and the presence of notable personalities that will include the Speaker, Ekiti State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Funminiyi Afuye amongst others.

Answering questions from Sportswriters, Mr. Badmos said the total prize money of one million Naira is intact as he also gave assurance that the sponsor would continue to foot the bills of the league for many years to come.

Also speaking, Chairman Ekiti State Football Association, Mr Bayo Olanlege thanked members of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN, Ekiti State Chapter for their support so far and he solicited their continued assistance in publicizing activities of the FA.

Bayo Olanlege

Mr Olanlege went ahead to disclose that budding talents identified from the competition would be integrated into the winning club, with a view to making sure that Ekiti presents a formidable side at the NLO Division 3 play-offs.

In his contributions, a member of the FA board, Chief Amos Ariyo expressed gladness on the performance of match officials so far in the competition. While he also promised that they would continue to offer commendable services.

Ekiti State Football Association

Earlier, another FA board member, Mr. Fatukasi expressed delight over the rapport between the FA and the sponsor on one hand, as well as the FA and Sportswriters, saying such would improve football in the State.

On Friday, the 11th of this month, four clubs, Moyero FC, Ifaki United FC, Soccer Academy, Igede and EKSU Galacticos would contest in the semi finals of the 2019 Bet9ja Ekiti Football league starting from 1pm.

Bet9ja Ekiti Football League

The 3rd place and final matches would hold on Sunday 13th October by 1pm and 3pm respectively, all at the Oluyemi Kayode Stadium Ado Ekiti.

Foreign Scouts Storm KIFA Camp For New “Kanu”

Kanu International Football Academy received a morale booster with the arrival of top rated foreign football scouts at its Ilaji Hotels and Sports Resort camp, Ibadan.

According to the national coordinator of the high brow football academy, Prince Dapo Ajibade, the football scouts are in the country to witness the 8 teams national championship organised by KIFA and ostensibly, pick fresher and talented youngsters in the mould of legendary Nwankwo Kanu and other great players.

“Our national camp is buzzing with exciting and talented youngsters who are determined to take world football by the storm. And we’re sure to discover great players in the mould of Kanu, Okocha, Keshi and others.

According to the former boss of Sunshine Stars football club, the championship which begins today, is a prelude to its international scouting tournament slated for 15th – 20th, October, in Lagos.

Akeem Busari

African Volleyball Confederation Opens registrations for 2020 African Continental Cup

African Volleyball Confederation “CAVB” has extended the registration for the 2020 Continental Cup to October 14th, 2019 to allow Continental National Federations to participate in the prestigious continental Olympic qualification process.

Thrills will be at the peak again as the third edition of the Continental Cup gets underway in a short time to determine the African representatives in both men and women categories.

The CAVB Continental Cup is the African Qualification towards the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. The competition is divided into 3 phases: Sub-Zonal, 2nd Round Phase and Finals.

Tunisia celebrate their Gold medal

The 3 phases would take place from Mid November 2019 till 30th of June 2020. Each National Federation can compete in the Men’s Event only, Women’ Event only OR both genders.

This Competition is played in Country vs. Country Format, each National Federation must compete with 2 teams per gender. The Match Format will be Best of 3 matches, a golden Set will be played for the deciding match.

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