Ghana

WAC 2023: El Bakkali, Kipyegon grab gold

Olympic gold medallist, Soufi­ane El Bakkali, of Morocco claimed his second consecu­tive world championship title in the men’s 3,000 metres steeplechase on Tuesday.

The 27-year-old held off world record holder and Olympic silver medallist, Lamecha Girma, of Ethiopia to win in eight minutes

 3.53 seconds and then laid down in the water hazard in celebration on a humid night at the National Athletics Centre.

The 22-year-old Girma, who blased to 7:52.11 at the Paris Dia­mond League on June 9 to break the 19-year-old world record, lost contact with El Bakkali over the fi­nal water jump en route to his third world silver in 8:05.44.

Kenyan’s Abraham Kibiwot clipped a barrier and fell heading into the final lap, but scrambled back to his feet and then overtook team mate Leonard Kipkemoi Bett to take a well-earned bronze in 8:11.98.

On the same night, Kenyan middle-distance superstar, Faith Kipyegon, (29) capped a year that brought her a hat-trick of world re­cords by claiming a treble of world 1,500 metres gold medals as she ran a perfect race to come home in 3:54.87.

Kipyegon, the double Olympic champion, has not lost over the distance for two years. Budapest is her sixth world championships and she now has a remarkable haul of three golds, two silvers and a fifth place on her debut in 2013.

Ethiopia’s Diribe Welteji (21) was the best of the rest as she took silver in 3:55.69, with Sifan Hassan (30) of the Netherlands finishing well for bronze in 3:56.00.

Kipyegon and Hassan are likely to clash again later in the week when both race over 5,000m.-Reuters

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