Old rivals all set to clash again

Momanyi and Abeylegesse cut the tape a time of 32:02 seconds to share the spoils in the 2008 edition.

Neither Momanyi nor Abeylegesse took part in the second edition which was won by Ethiopia’s Mergia Aselefech (32.08S) but the Kenyan sounded realistic of her chances in a star-studded field on her return.

“Returning to where I put in one of my best performances is nice. It really boosts your chances but with a list like this you never really know,” Momanyi said at a press conference at the Sree Kanteerava stadium on Thursday.

Training hard

“I have trained really hard for this event and I will clock a good time. This year is different from 2008 simply because of the challenge in store for all the runners but with such a field a very good time can be expected because everyone is pushing harder.”
In her absence, a lot has changed in the City and the course too has undergone a change this time.

The change might not be a significant factor but the 29-year-old, who finished fourth in the 10,000M event with a time of 30:52.25 in the World Championships at Berlin last year, thought otherwise.

“I have not seen the course yet but I will soon. In 2008 it was much warmer and I had to change my style continuously to keep a rhythm going. I heard that some changes have been made to the course but I can only assess my tactics after I take a look at it. Plus, the past two days here have been cool, that should help us run better,” said Momanyi.

Strong contender

Another strong contender for the title is Holland’s Hilda Kibet, who was fourth last year.
The Kenyan-born runner, who has a best 10K time of 31:01, clocked at Schoorl in February 2008, kept her feet firmly on the ground.

“Its very nice to come back here. I might not have put up a good performance last time but I’m hoping all the training I’ve put in this year comes good,” said Hilda.
“As Grace said this is an unbelievable field of runners and one can only hope to achieve something big.

“But when you know your body is in great condition and know everything looks like its is going your way, you just have to fancy your chances, no matter what is in front of you and I’m in that place now.”

Traning in Holland, where the temperatures are much cooler, Hilda said the weather will play a big role.

“We runners normally like it cool. The hotter it gets the more of a strain it is. I’ve been training in really cold conditions so this is a like a tropical break. I heard it has been windy here for a while now, I can only hope for it to be on my back and not where it usually ends up,” said a jovial Hilda.

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