Timothy Cheruiyot, Conseslus Kipruto left off Kenya Olympic track team

Timothy Cheruiyot
Getty Images

World 1500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot and Olympic 3000m steeplechase champion Conseslus Kipruto were not named on Kenya’s Olympic roster after not finishing in the top three of their races at their Olympic Trials.

Cheruiyot had not finished worse than second in a 1500m in four years, and lost just three times since the start of 2018, according to Tilastopaja.org. But on Saturday in Nairobi, he was passed for third place in the final straightaway, then reportedly limped off to a medical tent.

Kipruto, the lone runner to win the same individual event at the 2016 Olympics, 2017 Worlds and 2019 Worlds, dropped out in the early laps of the steeple on Saturday, according to broadcast commentary. Kipruto has started three races since the start of 2020 and didn’t finish any of them.

In November 2019, Kipruto pled not guilty after being charged with having sexual intercourse with a 15-year-old girl and was released on bail. Kipruto faced at least 20 years in prison if convicted, according to Kenya’s sexual offenses laws. It’s unclear where the case stands.

Athletics Kenya reportedly has discretion to pick somebody who finishes outside the top three for the third and final spot in an event. But the federation announced its Olympic team at the conclusion of Trials, printing and tweeting the roster without Cheruiyot or Kipruto.

The 2015 and 2017 World men’s 1500m champions are out of the Olympics due to doping bans. The 2012 and 2016 Olympic champions are Algerian Taoufik Makhloufi, who last raced in October 2019, and Matthew Centrowitz, favored to make the team at the U.S. Olympic Trials next weekend.

Jakob Ingebrigtsen, a 20-year-old Norwegian who was fourth at 2019 Worlds, is the the second-fastest man in this Olympic cycle after Cheruiyot.

In the men’s steeple, Rio silver medalist Evan Jager is out after missing the U.S. Olympic Trials due to leg muscle tears. Lamecha Girma, the 2019 World silver medalist, did not race the Ethiopian Olympic Trials.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Joel Embiid gains U.S. citizenship, mum on Olympic nationality

Joel Embiid

Philadelphia 76ers All-Star center Joel Embiid said he is now a U.S. citizen and it’s way too early to think about what nation he would represent at the Olympics.

“I just want to be healthy and win a championship and go from there,” he said, according to The Associated Press.

Embiid, 28, was born in Cameroon and has never competed in a major international tournament. In July, he gained French nationality, a step toward being able to represent that nation at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

In the spring, French media reported that Embiid started the process to become eligible to represent France in international basketball, quoting national team general manager Boris Diaw.

Embiid was second in NBA MVP voting this season behind Serbian Nikola Jokic. He was the All-NBA second team center.

What nation Embiid represents could have a major impact on the Paris Games.

In Tokyo, a French team led by another center, Rudy Gobert, handed the U.S. its first Olympic defeat since 2004. That was in group play. The Americans then beat the French in the gold-medal game 87-82.

That France team had five NBA players to the U.S.’ 12: Nicolas BatumEvan FournierTimothe Luwawu-CabarrotFrank Ntilikina and Gobert.

Anthony Davis, who skipped the Tokyo Olympics, is the lone U.S. center to make an All-NBA team in the last five seasons. In that time, Embiid made four All-NBA second teams and Gobert made three All-NBA third teams.

No Olympic team other than the U.S. has ever had two reigning All-NBA players on its roster.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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LA 2028, Delta unveil first-of-its-kind emblems for Olympics, Paralympics

Delta LA 2028
LA 2028

Emblems for the 2028 Los Angeles Games that include logos of Delta Air Lines is the first integration of its kind in Olympic and Paralympic history.

Organizers released the latest set of emblems for the LA 2028 Olympics and Paralympics on Thursday, each with a Delta symbol occupying the “A” spot in LA 28.

Two years ago, the LA 2028 logo concept was unveiled with an ever-changing “A” that allowed for infinite possibilities. Many athletes already created their own logos, as has NBC.

“You can make your own,” LA28 chairperson Casey Wasserman said in 2020. “There’s not one way to represent Los Angeles, and there is strength in our diverse cultures. We have to represent the creativity and imagination of Los Angeles, the diversity of our community and the big dreams the Olympic and Paralympic Games provide.”

Also in 2020, Delta was announced as LA 2028’s inaugural founding partner. Becoming the first partner to have an integrated LA 2028 emblem was “extremely important for us,” said Emmakate Young, Delta’s managing director, brand marketing and sponsorships.

“It is a symbol of our partnership with LA, our commitment to the people there, as well as those who come through LA, and a commitment to the Olympics,” she said.

The ever-changing emblem succeeds an angelic bid logo unveiled in February 2016 when the city was going for the 2024 Games, along with the slogan, “Follow the Sun.” In July 2017, the IOC made a historic double awarding of the Olympics and Paralympics — to Paris for 2024 and Los Angeles for 2028.

The U.S. will host its first Olympics and Paralympics since 2002 (and first Summer Games since 1996), ending its longest drought between hosting the Games since the 28-year gap between 1932 and 1960.

Delta began an eight-year Olympic partnership in 2021, becoming the official airline of Team USA and the 2028 Los Angeles Games.

Athletes flew to this year’s Winter Games in Beijing on chartered Delta flights and will do so for every Games through at least 2028.

Previously, Delta sponsored the last two Olympics held in the U.S. — the 1996 Atlanta Games and the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games.

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