Cancellation of Boston Marathon leaves Cherono in limbo

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2020 00:00 | By
Lawrence Cherono winning last year’s Boston Marathon. Photo/PD/FILE

 Ericson Kiprono

Reigning Boston Marathon champion Lawrence Cherono is in a dilemma after his plans for this year were thrown into disarray following the cancellation of the 124th edition of the Boston marathon last week.

The race, initially set to take place in April, was postponed to September 14 due to the global coronavirus pandemic but organisers last week considered that date still not feasible and resolved to cancel it altogether. 

“There is no way to hold the usual race format without bringing large numbers of people into close proximity,” said Boston Mayor Marty Walsh while announcing the cancellation last Thursday. 

“While our goal and our hope was to make progress and contain the virus in recovering our economy, this kind of event would not be responsible or realistic on September 14 or anytime this year,” he added.

Beyond our control

That decision has now left Cherono with sleepless nights as it means his daily training sessions have been washed down the drain.

“The world has come to a standstill. It is frustrating but it’s something beyond our control. I have to wait for another year to realise my dream to represent the country,” Cherono told People Sport from Eldoret yesterday.

“I have no idea if the battle against coronavirus will have been won. But I can do farming and I will keep on training, even on my own to make sure  I will be ready to answer the call when marathon competitions resume,” added Cherono.

In last year’s edition, Cherono shook off stiff opposition from Ethiopia’s Lelisa Delisa to win the Boston Marathon by two seconds, cutting the tape in 2:07:57 while the Ethiopian came in second in 2:07:59.

Cherono has previously won the Prague Marathon in 2:07:24 in 2015 and went ahead to claim victory at the Honolulu Marathon in 2:09:39.

He finished second at the 2017 Rotterdam Marathon in a personal best of 2:06:21 before winning Amsterdam Marathon in 2:05:09. He went back to Honolulu in 2018 and defended his title in a course record of 2:08:27.

In 2018, he had his shot at the World Marathon Majors in London but a hamstring injury slowed him down in the second part of the race as he eventually finished seventh in 2:09:25, a race won by Eliud Kipchoge.

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