Kenya's Kipruto wins Diamond despite running with one shoe, eyes Continental Cup

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Kenya's Olympic and world champion Conseslus Kipruto has signaled he intends to go beyond retaining his Diamond Trophy to clocking fastest time when he won the 3,000m steeplechase, despite running most of the race with one shoe.

Kipruto, world silver medalist in 1,500m Timothy Cheruiyot together with Hellen Obiri were the only Kenyans to claim the Diamond Trophy as the curtain came down on the premier track and field season in Zurich.

But of importance is their hunger to stage fast times at the Continental Cup in Ostrava, the Czech Republic on Sept. 8-9.

"This foot just won a Diamond," said Kipruto who had a big bandage on his left foot after he lost his shoe on the second lap of the 3,000m steeplechase but still won.

"It feels nice to have a win again. Sorry about the slow time. My ankle problem flared up again. I didn't want to let anyone down," he added on Friday.

Kipruto proved that it was winning rather than time that was critical as he put his form on the line to prove his critics wrong that he is still the best in the water and hurdle race.

"I have big pain," said Kipruto. "I am injured because I lost my left shoe. That was a mess. But it motivated me to fight as hard as I could, so the race went well."

Kenya's Obiri, who has endured a torrid season, came to life in the final to retain her title beating European champion Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands.

"Before the race I felt I would not win," said Obiri. "Finally everything came together, and I am proud. Next stop is at the Continental Cup and am ready for the challenge."

World and Commonwealth Games 1,500m champion Elijah Manangoi could not match Diamond League champion Timothy Cheruiyot finishing kick. Cheruiyot retains the Diamond Trophy for the second time clocking 3:30.27.

The finals in 32 events are being split between Zurich (Thursday) and Friday's in Brussels. They mark the climax to the Diamond League season, with athletes accruing points at the year's previous 12 meetings in order to qualify for the finals.

There is a prize of 50,000 U.S. dollars for each final winner. It means that Kipruto, Cheruiyot and Obiri, all who retained their Diamond Trophy this season will walk home with 60,000 dollars being 50,000 dollars cash for winning the Diamond Trophy and 10,000 dollars for winning in Zurich. 

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