(Reuters) - Defending London Marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya will renew his rivalry with 2014 winner and compatriot Wilson Kipsang at this year’s race after both confirmed their participation in the April 24 event, organizers said on Tuesday.
Kipchoge, who currently leads the world rankings, clinched victory over Kipsang, 33, at last year’s London Marathon by just five seconds and also won the 2015 Berlin Marathon, where he clocked a personal best of two hours and four minutes.
“This year I will come back to London to compete again with the world’s best athletes,” Kipchoge said in a statement issued by the organizers.
“I will work hard to defend my title in London and, together with Wilson, Dennis (Kimetto), Stanley (Biwott) and those from other countries, make it a fast and wonderful race.”
Kipsang, who holds the current record in the London Marathon, completing the race in 2:04:29, is set to be Kipchoge’s strongest rival again.
Ghirmay Ghebreslassie, who became the youngest ever marathon world champion in Beijing last year, also announced he will be making his first appearance in London.
Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru; editing by Sudipto Ganguly