Uganda: Nanyondo Hopes High At London Diamond League

The group comprising Joshua Cheptegei, Albert Chemutai, Peruth Chemutai, Halimah Nakaayi, Winnie Nanyondo and Ronald Musagala have been frequent figures on track at the lucrative IAAF Diamond League (DL) Meet circuit.

Trio of Cheptegei, Nakaayi and Nanyondo have each run four races on the DL circuit this season, a rare landmark for Ugandan elite runners, at least going by the recent years.

Such consistency in major events has seen Nanyondo set four national records over the 1500m (twice) and the one-mile run (indoor and outdoor) over the last six months.

Nanyondo's last race was at the Monaco DL Meet in France eight days ago where she rewrote the NR to 4:18.65 as Dutch girl Sifan Hassan set a new world record over the mile.

"I feel very good because of my performance this year," she told this paper early this week.

To boost her chances of a medal at the Worlds set for Doha, Qatar from September 28 - October 6, Nanyondo wants to raise the bar when she lines-up for the 1500m race at London DL Meet in England this afternoon.

"To run 3:58," Nanyondo, an 800m bronze medallist at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, said her target after confirming entry on Thursday.

If she attains that goal, the 25-year-old will have broken the 1500m NR for the third time in the season.

And it is likely to happen especially if Nanyondo is pushed to the limits by the solid the 19-man field at the London Stadium.

Whereas her manager Jurrie van der Velden and coach Addy Ruiter are optimistic, they know the field in London won't be a cakewalk matter.

"Top five (for Nanyondo)," remarked Ruiter. "(A) very strong field," he said. Nanyondo's NR of 3:59.56 posted in sixth place at Rabat DL in Morocco on June 16 is the eighth fastest time over the 1500m this year.

Bar world leader Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba and Hassan, Nanyondo will face the other five who have run faster than her; Briton Laura Muir, Ethiopians Gudaf Tsegay and Axumawit Embaye, Moroccan Rabade Arafi and Kenyan Faith Kipyegon.

LONDON DIAMOND LEAGUE

UGANDAN IN ACTION

Women's 1500m: Winnie Nanyondo

LIVE ON SS8, 4PM

AT A GLANCE

Date of birth: August 23, 1993

Major races: 800m, 1500m

Personal Best: 1:58.63 (800m), 3:59.56 (1500m)

Major Honour: 2014 Commonwealth bronze (800m)

Kit Sponsor: Adidas

Manager: Jurrie van der Velden

UGANDANS in the mix

MAY 18 - SHANGHAI DL

Men's 5000m

7th Joshua Cheptegei, 13:06.68

15th Stephen Kissa, 13:19.85

Women's 1500m

3rd Winnie Nanyondo, 4:01.39

12th Esther Chebet, 4:07.75

Women's 3000m Steeplechase

3rd Peruth Chemutai, 9:17.78

MAY 30 - STOCKHOLM DL

Men's 10000m

10th Timothy Toroitich, 28:06.87

JUNE 6 - ROME DL

Men's 5000m

16th Oscar Chelimo, 13:20.10

Men's 3000m Steeplechase

7th Albert Chemutai, 8:16.66

JUNE 13 - OSLO DL

Men's 3000m

2nd Joshua Cheptegei, 7:33.26

Women's 800m

1st Halimah Nakaayi, 2:01.93

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