Daniel Simiu clears the air on his finish line gesture to Sabastian Sawe in the men's 21km race in Riga

ATHLETICS Daniel Simiu clears the air on his finish line gesture to Sabastian Sawe in the men's 21km race in Riga

Abigael Wafula 17:49 - 02.10.2023

Daniel Simiu has come out to share what his gesture to Sabastian Sawe meant during the dramatic men's half marathon in Riga, Latvia.

The men’s half marathon at the World Athletics Road Running Championships was one of the most dramatic events in road racing ever witnessed.

The race saw three Kenyans finish in the podium but the major battle was between Sabastian Sawe and Daniel Simiu who were battling for the top prize.

Sawe eventually went ahead to take the top honours in a time of 59:10 ahead of compatriots Daniel Simiu Ebenyo (59:14) and Samwel Nyamai Mailu (59:19).

As the athletes approached the final stretch, Simiu was leading but Sawe was in hot pursuit of his compatriot.

As Sawe was chasing hot on the heels of Simiu, the latter smiled and then motioned at his teammate in what looked like a request for him to ease down but Simiu has come out to note that he did not mean that.

In an interview with World Athletics, he said: “I told him, ‘Don’t worry, go!’”

He added that as he was approaching the 18km mark, his legs were getting tired and he was expecting any outcome.

The World 10,000m silver medallist noted that he was happy with his second-place finish and his career is definitely taking the right direction.

“We pushed each other to a good result. At around 18km I just said, ‘Let me get to the finish’. I’m happy with the silver. My career is coming along slowly,” he said.

The Kenyan has enjoyed a blissful season, starting from when he started out at the World Cross-country Championships with a sixth-place finish in the men’s senior race.

He also competed in one other Half Marathon, in Istanbul where he won the race. In the 10,000m, Simiu finished second at the World Championships National Trials and managed to win the Kip Keino Classic.

He also dominated at the Diamond League Meeting in Brussels with a commanding win. In the 5000m, he has not raced in the international scene but competed in three races on home soil.

He won at the Kenya Police Championships and also dominated at the National Championships and later finished second at the National Trials.