Updated: April 9, 2015

Vivian Cheruiyot leads Ethiopia’s Meseret Defar, on her way to victory in the women’s 5 000m final at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin

Organisers of the FNB OneRun 12km race made a spectacular statement on Thursday, naming Kenyan superstar Vivian Cheruiyot in the international line-up for the inaugural event next month.
A three-time world track champion and two-time Olympic medallist, Cheruiyot was the first foreign runner revealed in the elite field for the unique race, to be held in Cape Town on May 17.
She was set to compete against the likes of Rene Kalmer and Mapaseka Makhanya, who were unveiled at the launch last month, with Stephen Mokoka and Elroy Gelant expected to lead the local charge in the men’s race, with the first batch of international male runners due to be unveiled next week.
Kalmer has once previously faced Cheruiyot, in the women’s 3 000m final at the World Indoor Championships in Doha, where the Kenyan secured the silver medal and the South African took ninth place.
She looked forward to meeting Cheruiyot again, this time on home soil.
“This is really good news and I feel honoured to be in the same line-up as her in my home country,” said Kalmer, who will compete at the Vienna Marathon this weekend.
“This is incredible for South African athletics and the sport of road running in general.”
Michael Meyer, the managing director of organisers Stillwater Sports, was equally delighted to have scooped such a big name in the elite field, confirming there were more to come.
“This is a coup for us and for road running, as having someone of Vivian’s calibre racing in the inaugural event is phenomenal,” Meyer said.
“She will spearhead the most formidable field ever assembled in South African athletics and we look forward to announcing further names over the next two weeks.”