Veteran runner Priscah Jeptoo will return to competition on Sunday when she competes at the Stramilano Half-marathon in Italy

The former world and Olympic silver medalist is the big name with a personal best time of 65:45 over the 21km distance and 2:20:14 in the full marathon. She has not competed on the big stage since 2016.

"I have not retired and have been training as hard as possible. I had injury challenges, but they are behind me for the time being and it will be a new start for me in Milan on Sunday," said Jeptoo in Nairobi.

Former world mountain running champion Lucy Wambui, the winner in 2015 with her still PB of 70:52, is back to try to regain her title, while another Kenyan, Ivyne Jeruto Lagat (71:51) will also figure highly. Beatrice Boccalini, who set a fast time of 73:36 in December, heads home team.

In the men's race steeplechaser Jairus Birech, who was fourth at the 2015 World Championships, will be making his half-marathon debut.

Birech, who has had it hard to contend with emerging competition in the water and hurdle race, will seek to carve his niche in the road race and will be joined by compatriot Fredrick Moranga, who won the race two years in 61:20.

"I still have hopes of making the Kenya team to the World Championships in the steeplechase. But I have to focus on the race ahead and I have no clue how I will perform. It is a new challenge, which I hope my body will take in its stride. But I expect a podium position," said Birech on Saturday.

posted Sunday March 24th