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Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei wins Olympic gold in men’s 5000m finals

Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda crosses the line to win gold ahead of Mohammed Ahmed of Canada (REUTERS)

TOKYO, JAPAN: Ugandan Athlete Joshua Cheptegei has claimed his long-awaited Olympic gold medal after winning the men’s race in 5000m on Friday, August, 6, in Tokyo Japan.

Chepetgei was in the leading pack for most of the race and won in 12 minutes, 58.15 seconds.

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Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda celebrates winning the gold medal

Mohammed Ahmed of Canada surged into second place to get the silver medal in 12:58.61 and Paul Chelimo of the United States picked up bronze in 12:59.05.

Chelimo was a silver medalist in the 5,000 at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics. He dived across the line to edge Nicholas Kipkorir Kimeli of Kenya.

Another Ugandan Jacob Kiplimo who won bronze in last week’s 10000m race finished 5th in today’s 5000m race while youngster Isaac Chelimo, Kiplimo’s young brother finished last in what his first elite men’s race at his Olympic debut.

Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda celebrates leads the race today afternoon

Cheptegei came into the race as one of the favorites to take the gold after setting the world record for the 5,000m in Monaco last year.

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Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda celebrates winning the gold medal

Cheptegei came out of the blocks quickly but the race pace was sporadic for the opening rounds, with the slower laps keeping Team GB’s Butchart in contention.

But a leading group of 10 runners, with Cheptegei at the front, broke away with three laps to go leaving the Briton behind as the leader of the second group.

Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda celebrates winning the gold medal

Cheptegei then sped away as the bell rang and was relatively untroubled when he crossed the line with a time of 12:58.15, around 23 seconds behind his own world record time.

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Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda celebrates winning the gold medal with Jacob Kiplimo of Uganda
(Reuters / Lucy Nicholson)

This is Uganda’s second gold in the ongoing Tokyo Olympics after Steeplechase runner, Peruth Chemutai won gold in the 3000m race in Tuesday this week.

Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda poses with his national flag after winning gold. (Reuters / Dylan Martinez)
Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda poses after winning gold alongside silver medallist, Mohammed Ahmed of Canada and bronze medallist, Paul Chelimo of the United States

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