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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

'They can run under 3:30' - World Champion Manangoi heaps praise on King Ryan and Tshite

Elijah Manangoi was full of praise for Ryan Mphahlele and Tshepo Tshite after their magnificent performances at the Cape Milers/Endurocad Invitational Meet in Cape Town last night. Running in only his third race since returning from injury, the 2017 World Champion was powerless as Mphahlele won the race in 3:32.90 - the fastest time this year and the second fastest time ever run by a South African. Tshite's 3:33.02 for second place ranks third on the SA All-Time list. Only Johan Cronje's who ran a 3:31.93 SA Record in Italy has gone faster than the pair. And Manangoi believes that it's only a matter of time before King Ryan and Tshite go even faster.

Mphahlele celebrates a new personal best, world lead and qualification for the World Championships. Photo Credit: Endurocad.

"I think the guys are ready now," he told #TheTopRunner after finishing the race at the Green Point Stadium in 3:37.42. "The are on a good level because to run 3:32 is not an easy thing in 1500m - especially on African soil. So when they go to Europe I think they'll go faster than this and are even capable of running under 3:30 because they are in good form and they are good competitors so I think they are ready to go."


High praise indeed from a man whose personal best is a jaw-dropping 3:28.80 and also boasts a World Championship silver medalist and Commonwealth Games gold medal to go with the World Championship title he won in London. The Kenyan says with tough competition like this, the Cape Milers/Endurocad Invitational meets are the perfect place to start racing again as he continues on the road to recovery and tries to secure a spot at the World Championships in Budapest in August.


Manangoi celebrates after taking the silver medal at the 2015 World Championships in Beijing. The two-time Kenyan 1500m champion last competed at the World Championships in 2017 and is adamant that he will be back at the highest level again in 2023. Photo Credit: Elijah Manangoi.

"I'm ready. I am really focussed for races right now and that's why I'm here in SA in Cape Town and I'm going to do some good races this year before the Kenya Trials in June. So I'm serious about my comeback and I'm looking forward for the World Champs. That is my major focus this year," said the man who will run again in the third and final Cape Milers/Endurocad Invitational Meet on Monday 24 April.


In addition to King Ryan and Tshite qualifying for the World Championships, there were a few other noteworthy performances on the blue track perched on the foothills of Table Mountain. Kyla Jacobs smashed her personal best by over ten seconds when she won the women's 5000m (15:20.61) ahead of Glenrose Xaba (15:29.72), while Anthony Timoteus also set a new lifetime best over twelve and a half laps of the track when he won the race in 13:35.90, with 21-year-old Nicholas Seoposengwe taking second in 13:41.46.


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