Double Africa Junior Athletics champions Moses Ndiema Masai believes his kid sister Linet Chepkwemoi Masai has what it takes to win the London Marathon this Sunday in the United Kingdom.
Moses, who started his running career at his tender age at Kapsogom primary school in Mount Elgon, Bungoma County, said his sister has been consistent in her career after graduating from track to marathon. Linet, who is also a former world 10,000m champion, made her marathon debut last year in Amsterdam, where she placed fourth in 2:23.46 and London will be her second career marathon.
Moses, who won the 5,000m and 10,000m races at the 2005 Africa Athletics championships, said the 2007 world junior cross country champion has been preparing well for the race and will no doubt post good results.
“I know how dedicated she has been in her training in the runner-up for London. Despite competing against experienced line up, I believe she is up to the task and she will deliver good results if not her personal best. For her, this could be the turning point in her career and the strong field in London is likely to play to her advantage,” said Moses the 2005 Most promising athlete at the Sports Personality of the Year Award (SOYA).
Linet will face off with the London Marathon defending champion and 2016 Olympics Games 5,000m champion Vivian Cheruiyot, three-time London Marathon champion and women’s world record holder Mary Keitany (2:17.01), 2018 Amsterdam Marathon champion Gladys Cherono and 2018 Chicago Marathon winner Brigid Kosgey among others.
“In Amsterdam, she ran very well on her debut and I believe she will replicate the same performance in London if not make an improvement. She is the surprise package in London and she will no doubt pull a shocker,” said Moses at her Iten home on Thursday morning.
Moses, the eldest of John Barasa and Leonida Cherop children, said as a family, they have been supporting each other in training and wished her sister the best of luck. Besides Moses and Linet, their other siblings—Magdalene and Dennis Masai are also athletes of repute.
Moses, who has been battling a knee injury for years, said he wanted to venture into marathon but the knock has prevented him from doing so. “Like the world marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge and Mo Farah, I would have loved to be in the London race but this injury can’t allow me,” he added.
However, he is not giving up just yet. “London is my dream marathon and I hope to feature in the race before hanging my spikes,” said a frustrated Moses.
Kipchoge leads the Kenyan line-up in the men’s category including the former world record holder, Wilson Kipsang (2:03.13), former London champion, Daniel Wanjiru (2:05.210) and world half-marathon record holder Abraham Kiptum (2:05.26) among others.