Bangalore, May 17 (IANS): The Kenyan dominance in the TCS World 10K Bangalore run to be held here Sunday is more than likely to continue with a bunch of super-fast runners from the East African nation in the fray.
Kenya has stamped its authority on the 10K run here, with their male runners winning the previous four editions and the women, the previous two years.
Geoffrey Kamworor, the 2012 winner and defending champion Alex Oloitiptip will no doubt spearhead the challenge in the men's section while Lucy Kabuu would be looking to achieve a hat-trick of wins for her country in the women's category.
The Indian presence will be marked by the country's leading runners BC Tilak, VL Dangi, Soji Mathew and Santosh K among men, and Vijaymala Patil, Priyanka Singh Patel, Neelam Rajput and Manisha Dattatray Salunkhe among women.
Both Kamworor and Kabuu have expressed justifiable optimism to top their respective fields on the morrow, given that the duo is in top form and fresh from recent international success.
Kamworor recently won the World Half Marathon and is keen to repeat his 2012 win here while Kabuu was third at the Tokyo Marathon.
The 21-year old Kamworor is no stranger to Indian conditions. Besides winning the 10K Bangalore in 2012, he was the runner-up in the 2011 and 2013 Delhi Half Marathon. He would be banking on this experience to carry him through.
Kamworor will face stiff competition from follow-Kenyan Oloitiptip, the defending champion who was runner-up in 2012.
Other top athletes include the incredibly fast track athlete Vincent Chepkok from Kenya, who has finished below the 30-minute mark 11 times in the past.
In 2013, Chepkok, the 25-year old from the famous Rift Valley, ran the eighth fastest time of the year over 10,000 metres and will be among the contenders here.
Others such as Ethopia's Kinde Atanaw, the fastest man in the run with a best of 27:36, Moroccoa¿s Najim El Qady, and Kenyans Jacob Kendagor and Peter Matelong make for a quality field.
Kabuu, winner of 2011 Delhi Half Marathon in 2011, enjoyed a good season last year when she won the RAK Half Marathon, finished third at the Delhi Half Marathon, and fourth at the World 10K Bangalore.
Kabuu will be up against compatriot Linet Masai, who is in India for the first time. Masai has won seven medals at various World Championships with the Gold at the 2009 Berlin World Championship in 10,000 metres being the highlight.
The two Kenyans can expect stiff challenge from Ethopian runner Guteni Shone who was second behind Glady Cherono here last year.
The winners in the men's and women's World 10K categories stand will receive USD 21,000 each. An added incentive of USD 7,500 is up for grabs for the new course record.
Currently, the men's record is 27:51 minutes, set by Eritrea's Zersenay Tadese in 2008, while the women's mark stands at 31:58, by Ethiopian Yimer Wude in 2010.
The top Indian men and women finishers will receive Rs.2 lakh, the runner up Rs.1.5 lakh and a prize-money of Rs.2 lakh each for men and women, if they lower existing Indian course records.