Kassim, Lariba win Accra Milo Marathon

BY: Pater Sarbah
Alhassan Kassim proudly raises the winner’s trophy aloft.  Picture: Emmanuel Quaye

Alhassan Kassim Mohammed was yesterday crowned the 2015 Accra Milo Marathon champion after he won the 42.2-kilometre race to successfully defend the men’s title.

But the women’s event produced an upset as teenage sensation Lariba Sakat of the Upper East Region won the race ahead of the more experienced Millicent Boadi, the pre-race favourite.

Kassim, a 31-year-old long distance runner of the Ghana Armed Forces, was one of the pre-race  favourites but was not among the front liners at the  Nungua barrier where Dr Mustapha Ahmed, Minister of Youth and Sports, signalled for the start of the race.

However, the defending champion started to build up pace along the routes to overtake pacesetters to the finish line in a time of 2 hours, 20.30 minutes ahead of his closest challengers Joseph Yandal and Malik Yakubu.

Along the routes, Kassim  recieved cheers and encouragement from onlookers and fans as he powered home stongly without showing signs of exhaustion when he crossed the finish line at the Dansoman Keep Fit Club grounds.

It took almost two minutes for Yandal (2:21.66 hours) and Yakubu (2:23.40 hours) to later cross the finish line for the second and third position respectively.

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The women’s competition proved equally exciting as Lariba, winner of the Under- 15 race two years ago, finished well ahead of Millicent in a time of 2 hours, 42.12 minutes.  Boadi crossed the line 10 minutes later in 2 hours,53 minutes.Elizabeth Bortsor (3:02.12 hours) came third .

David Otoo, a 14-year old of the Bremang J.H.S, won the boys’ Under-15 male with Nafisatu Sumani of the Brong Ahafo Region emerging champion of the girls’ division.