18 May 2011

Kirui set to defend world marathon title

9:10 am on 18 May 2011

Kenya's world marathon champion Abel Kirui has been given the opportunity to defend his title in South Korea later this year after other top runners turned down a place on the team.

Kirui had been left off the provisional list of 10 men and 10 women but, with only six athletes having confirmed their availability to Athletics Kenya by the deadline, he has now been named on the team.

London marathon champion Emmanuel Mutai had a previous commitment to run elsewhere, while second-placed Martin Lel is also unavailable after suffering a recurrence of the leg injury which has troubled him for the past three years.

The selection of the Kenyan team has been overshadowed by the death of Olympic champion Samuel Wanjiru who fell to his death last weekend.