Joshua Cheptegei and Jacob Kiplimo won silver and bronze medals respectively for Uganda in the men’s 10,000m final at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
Cheptegei clocked a Season Best 27:43.63 ahead of Kiplimo who clocked 27:43.88 in the epic event at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo, Japan.
Cheptegei, the world record holder, was widely expected to win gold. However, he was upset by Ethiopia’s Selemon Barega who finished ahead by a matter of microseconds.
Cheptegei said he was experiencing mixed emotions.
“I have two feelings. One is that I’m very happy to have won an Olympic silver medal today,” he told reporters. “But the other side of me is really not satisfied with the result because I came here expecting to win a gold.”
Stephen Kissa acted as the early pacemaker before dropping out a little over halfway through the race.
“We had a plan for me to go ahead to make it a fast race,” Kissa told reporters. “I thought they were going to follow me but when I looked round they were not there.”
Cheptegei led briefly before dropping back into the pack and Barega seized his chance, moving among the leaders in the last third of the race before hitting the front with a surge on the last lap to secure his surprise victory.