Bahraini Athletes Win Historic Gold and Silver Medals
Bahrain athlete Ruth Jebet has won Bahrain’s first Olympic gold when she claimed the women’s 3000m steeplechase on Monday August 16th.
Jebet clocked an Asian record of 8min 59.75 seconds, just short of the the world record by less than a second. Jebet, the former world junior champion is the second-fastest woman ever and only the second to run the event in less than nine minutes.
“I’m happy to be a gold medallist, it was my first attempt to have a medal and I’m happy,” said Jebet. “Today it was too hot for the athletes, it was not easy to run a good time but I tried my best and the track is good. Yesterday I saw the new record in the 400m (by Wayde van Niekerk) and in the 10,000m also a new world record so I thought why not a world record for me.”
Chebet said Bahraini team officials had been confident she could medal. “They saw how I ran in the Diamond League and how I did there, and they told me when I was coming that ‘we’re sure of you, you’re going to have a medal’.”
Reigning world champion Hyvin Kiyeng Jepkemoi of Kenya took silver in 9:07.12, with American Emma Coburn claiming bronze (9:07.63).
Just a few days ago, another Bahraini athlete clinched a historic silver medal for the Kingdom in the Women’s Marathon at the Rio Olympics.
Bahrain’s Eunice Kirwa completed the course in two hours 24 minutes and 13 seconds, which is nine seconds adrift of Kenya’s gold-medal winner Jemima Sumgong (2:24.04). The bronze went to the defending World Champion Mare Dibaba (2:24:30) of Ethiopia.