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'Provisional Suspension Against Bahraini Long-Distance Runner Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa'

The AIU announced today that Kenyan-born Bahraini Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa has been provisionally suspended for a positive test for EPO. Prior to disappearing at the end of 2017 after winning the Macao International Marathon Kirwa was a familiar face in Japan, winning all seven of her races there between 2015 and 2017, taking 2nd in another in 2013, and medaling at the 2014 Incheon Asian Games, 2015 Beijing World Championships and 2016 Rio Olympics.

It was notable that despite her string of international medals Kirwa never ran the big European and American races after hitting that level, her only appearance in the World Marathon Majors a DNF at the 2014 Boston Marathon and her only times running the biggest European marathons coming in 2012 and 2013 in Amsterdam, Paris and Frankfurt, all in the 2:21-2:23 range and making the top three twice.

Details of Kirwa's case are still forthcoming, but below is a list of top finishers in the races mentioned above. Japanese women finished 2nd in all four of Kirwa's biggest marathon wins including her three Nagoya Women's Marathon victories, mirroring similar previous busts of frequent Japanese race winners like Russian Albina Mayorova and the Ukraine's Tetiana Shmyrko.

2017 Nagoya Women's Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 2:21:17
2. Yuka Ando (Japan) - 2:21:36
3. Mao Kiyota (Japan) - 2:23:47
4. Sayaka Kuwahara (Japan) - 2:26:09

2017 Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 1:08:07
2. Amy Cragg (U.S.A.) - 1:08:27
3. Riko Matsuzaki (Japan) - 1:11:04
4. Miho Shimizu (Japan) - 1:11:07

2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics Women's Marathon
1. Jemima Sumgong (Kenya) - 2:24:04 (also undergoing processing for doping suspension)
2. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 2:24:13
3. Mare Dibaba (Ethiopia) - 2:24:30
4. Tirfe Beyene (Ethiopia) - 2:24:47
5. Volha Mazuronak (Belarus) - 2:24:48
6. Shalane Flanagan (U.S.A.) - 2:25:26

2016 Gifu Seiryu Half Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 1:08:55
2. Bethlehem Moges (Ethiopia) - 1:11:09
3. Rebecca Chesire (Kenya) - 1:11:09
4. Visiline Jepkesho (Kenya) - 1:11:33

2016 Nagoya Women's Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 2:22:40
2. Tomomi Tanaka (Japan) - 2:23:19
3. Rei Ohara (Japan) - 2:23:20
4. Mao Kiyota (Japan) - 2:24:32

2016 Kagawa Marugame International Half Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 1:08:06
2. Diane Nukuri (Burundi) - 1:09:23
3. Eloise Wellings (Australia) - 1:09:29
4. Yuka Ando (Japan) - 1:10:10

2015 Beijing World Championships Women's Marathon
1. Mare Dibaba (Ethiopia) - 2:27:35
2. Helah Kiprop (Kenya) - 2:27:36
3. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 2:27:39
4. Jemima Sumgong (Kenya) - 2:27:42 (also undergoing processing for doping suspension)
5. Edna Kiplagat (Kenya) - 2:28:18

2015 Gifu Seiryu Half Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 1:09:37
2. Atsede Baysa (Ethiopia) - 1:10:37
3. Brianne Nelson (U.S.A.) - 1:12:43
4. Pasalia Kipkoech (Kenya) - 1:12:51

2015 Nagoya Women's Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 2:22:08
2. Sairi Maeda (Japan) - 2:22:48
3. Mai Ito (Japan) - 2:24:42
4. Risa Takenaka (Japan) - 2:28:09
*Russian Mariya Konovalova finished 2nd in 2:22:27 but had this and other results annulled as the result of a drug suspension, elevating Maeda to 2nd.

2014 Incheon Asian Games Women's Marathon
1. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 2:25:37
2. Ryoko Kizaki (Japan) - 2:25:50
3. Lishan Dula (Bahrain) - 2:33:13
4. Eri Hayakawa (Japan) - 2:33:14

2013 Gifu Seiryu Half Marathon
1. Mestawat Tufa (Ethiopia) - 1:10:03
2. Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa (Bahrain) - 1:10:09
3. Lara Tamsett (Australia) - 1:13:33
4. Yuko Mizuguchi (Japan) - 1:14:44

© 2019 Brett Larner, all rights reserved

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TokyoRacer said…
That list of results is very sad. Feel sorry for all those women who lost to her.

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