The semi-finals of the women's 1500m at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games took place on Wednesday. And Africa will have only three representatives in the final, scheduled for Friday 6 August. They are Faith Kipyegon of Kenya, Freweyni Hailu Gebreezibeher of Ethiopia and Winnie Nanyondo of Uganda.
The finalists in the women's 1500m at the Olympics are now known. However, only three African athletes were able to secure their ticket. Top seed Faith Kipyegon won her heat. Without forcing her way, the world vice-champion clocked 3:56.80. She confirmed her good form before the final. In the same heat, Ethiopia's Freweyni Gebreezibeher finished second with a time of 3mn57s54.
In the second heat, Winnie Nanyondo from Uganda validated her ticket to the final by finishing 4th in 4mn01s69. The race was won by the Dutch of Ethiopian origin Sifan Hassan (4mn00s23). The latter is a serious contender for Olympic gold. She also managed to beat Kipyegon at the 2019 World Championships in Doha.
Chebett's fatal fall
The first semi-final was mainly marked by the fall of Winnie Chebett. The Kenyan was hooked just after the start of the race. She never managed to get back into the lead park. Chebett finally finished in last place in 4 mn 11s62. This was a blow for Kenya, which will only have one athlete in the final as Edinah Jebitok also finished last in her heat with a time of 4:05:56.
Ethiopia's Lemlem Hailu missed out on qualification. She took 9th place in her semi-final with a time of 4mn04s76.