Kenyan marathoner Eliud Kipchoge was, on Saturday, named Male World Athlete of the Year for the second year in a row, but someone else picked the trophy for him in Monaco.
Kenyan government representatives including Cabinet Secretary for Sports Ambassador Amina Mohamed and her Permanent Secretary Kirimi Kaberia were present to receive the coveted trophy on behalf of Kipchoge. Athletics Kenya (AK) president Jackson Tuwei was also present.
Kipchoge beat the other four finalists to the award including World 10,000m champion Joshua Cheptegei of Uganda and world 400m hurdles champion Karsten Warholm of Norway.
Others were World 200m champion Noah Lyles and World Paul Vault champion Sam Kendricks both of USA.
The award comes on the back of another eventful year for Kipchoge who retained his London Marathon title as he bagged his fourth title at the English capital.
The Olympic champion also wrote history becoming the first man to cover a marathon race in less than two hours- a feat he achieved at the INEOS challenge in October.
But he was forced to comment on his award via Skype because he didn’t travel to the European city.
Opera News has now established that the Olympic hero had a tight schedule that could not allow him to attend the event.
He had just come from the US and had a state function in his village a day before the Monaco event. He was hosting senior government officials led by Cabinet Secretary for Education Prof. George Magoha at Kapsiywo Secondary School on Friday.