Sylvia Jebiwott Kibet

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Sylvia Jebiwott Kibet
Kibet (right) celebrating with Mercy Cherono at the 2011 World Championships
Medal record
Representing  Kenya
Women's athletics
World Championships
Silver medal – second place 2009 Berlin 5000 m
Silver medal – second place 2011 Daegu 5000 m
All-Africa Games
Bronze medal – third place 2007 Algiers 5000 m
Commonwealth Games
Silver medal – second place 2010 Delhi 5000 m

Sylvia Jebiwott Kibet (born 28 March 1984) is an Kenyan long-distance runner. She was the silver medallist in the 5000 metres at the World Championships in Athletics in both 2009 and 2011. She also won medals over the distance at the 2006 African Championships in Athletics, the 2007 All-Africa Games and 2010 Commonwealth Games.

She has narrowly missed out on medals at major championships on a number of occasions, having finished fourth at the 2007 World Championships, 2008 Beijing Olympics and twice over 3000 metres at the IAAF World Indoor Championships (in 2008 and 2010).


Kibet is from Kapchorwa, Nandi District. Her older sister Hilda Kibet is also a runner, who now represents the Netherlands, as does Lornah Kiplagat, their cousin.[1]

After winning the 1500 m silver medal at the 1999 World Youth Championships in Athletics, she took a break from athletics and married Erastus Limo, a former middle-distance runner. After giving birth to a daughter, she had her come-back in 2004. Living in Iten, a small town 30 km far from Eldoret, she met the Italian coach Renato Canova, and started training with him. She started to reach the international level in 2005, showing improving performances in her preferred event – the 5000 metres.[2]

She won the bronze medal in 5000 metres at the 2006 African Championships and finished fifth in 3000 metres at the 2006 World Athletics Final. In 2007 she won the bronze medal at the 2007 All-Africa Games and finished fourth at the 2007 World Championships,[3] and at the World Athletics Final she finished fifth in 3000 m and second in 5000 m.

In 2008 she set a national indoor record over 1500 m of 4:07.46 minutes at the BW-Bank Meeting in February. She finished fourth at the World Indoor Championships in a new Kenyan indoor record of 8:41.82 minutes. She won her first major outdoor medal at the 2009 World Championships in Athletics, taking the silver medal in the 5000 metres behind Vivian Cheruiyot.

Kibet just missed out on a medal in the 3000 m at the 2010 IAAF World Indoor Championships, pipped to the bronze by Sentayehu Ejigu. She ran at the 2010 Women's 5K Challenge in London but failed to retain her title from 2009, finishing second to Linet Masai.[4] She became the first women's winner of a newly inaugurated 7 km race at the Memorial Peppe Greco, beating Ejegayehu Dibaba to the line.[5] She won the 5000 m silver behind Cheruiyot at the 2010 Commonwealth Games.[6]

In March 2011 she won at the Trofeo Alà dei Sardi cross country race[7] She reached the podium on the 2011 Diamond League circuit once that season, taking third at the DN Galan over 5000 m. She gained selection to represent Kenya for a second consecutive time over the distance at the 2011 World Championships in Athletics. Vivian Cheruiyot defended her title, but Kibet beat Meseret Defar in a sprint finish for the silver medal.[8] At the 2012 Campaccio cross country she was runner-up behind her younger compatriot Mercy Cherono.[9]

Kibet came close to a medal over 3000 m at the 2012 IAAF World Indoor Championships with a fourth-place finish. She was fourth at the Kenyan 5000 m trials and wasn't selected for the 2012 London Olympics. She performed well on the 2012 Diamond League Circuit, having top three finishes in Doha, Monaco and Lausanne and finishing third overall in the rankings.[10] In her 10-mile debut in September, she won the Dam tot Damloop in a time of 51:42 minutes.[11] A win at the BOClassic brought a close to her year.[12]


Year Competition Venue Position Event Notes
Representing  Kenya
1999 World Youth Championships Bydgoszcz, Poland 2nd 1500 m 4:24.43
2006 African Championships Bambous, Mauritius 3rd 5000 m 15:57.14
World Athletics Final Stuttgart, Germany 5th 3000 m
2007 All-Africa Games Algiers, Algeria 3rd 5000 m 15:06.39
World Championships Osaka, Japan 4th 5000 m 14:59.26
World Athletics Final Stuttgart, Germany 5th 3000 m
2nd 5000 m
2008 World Indoor Championships Valencia, Spain 4th 3000 m 8:41.82
Olympic Games Beijing, China 4th 5000 m 15:44.96
World Athletics Final Stuttgart, Germany 6th 3000 m
6th 5000 m
2009 World Championships Berlin, Germany 2nd 5000m 14:58.33
World Athletics Final Thessaloniki, Greece 4th 5000 m
2010 World Indoor Championships Doha, Qatar 4th 3000 m 8:52.16
Commonwealth Games New Delhi, India 2nd 5000 m 15:55.61
2011 World Championships Daegu, South Korea 2nd 5000 m 14:56.21
2012 World Indoor Championships Istanbul, Turkey 4th 3000 m 8:40.50

Personal bests


  1. Daily Nation, 21 October 2007: Another Kenyan adopts Dutch passport
  2. James Wokabi and Mutwiri Mutuota (6 March 2011). Focus on Athletes – Sylvia Jebiwott KIBET. IAAF. Retrieved on 29 March 2011.
  3. 2007 All-Africa Games, women's 5000 m final
  4. Brown, Matthew (5 September 2010). Masai wins 5k Challenge in London. IAAF. Retrieved on 5 September 2010.
  5. Zorzi, Alberto (27 September 2010). Soi and Kibet take victories in Scili. IAAF. Retrieved on 28 September 2010.
  6. Rowbottom, Mike (13 October 2010). Women’s relay team crowns Indian glory – Commonwealth Games, Day Seven. IAAF. Retrieved on 29 March 2011.
  7. Sampaolo, Diego (28 March 2011). Another cross country win for World champion Merga – Alà dei Sardi report. IAAF. Retrieved on 29 March 2011.
  8. Martin, David (2 September 2011). Women's 5000m – Final – Cheruiyot completes double in Daegu. IAAF. Retrieved on 6 January 2012.
  9. Sampaolo, Diego (6 January 2012). Soi defends in a thriller, Cherono dominates at Campaccio XC. IAAF. Retrieved on 6 January 2012.
  10. 2012 Samsung Diamond League 5000m Women. Diamond League. Retrieved on 27 January 2013.
  11. Komon defends Dam to Dam title. IAAF (23 September 2012). Retrieved on 27 January 2013.
  12. Sampaolo, Diego (1 January 2013). Favourites Merga and Kibet win in Bolzano. IAAF. Retrieved on 22 January 2013.

External links