International Athletics

New twist in Wanjiru's death

2015-02-10 18:46
Samuel Wanjiru (File)

Nairobi - Former Kenyan Olympic marathon gold medallist Samuel Wanjiru was killed by a blunt object to his head and did not commit suicide, a top pathologist told an inquest Tuesday.

Wanjiru, 24, was found dead in May 2011 after he fell from the first-floor balcony of his house in central Kenya's Nyahururu town.

At the time it was reported that the runner was having an extra-marital affair and leapt from the balcony to escape his furious wife. Police also suggested he may have committed suicide.

Moses Njue, a former chief government pathologist, told the inquest in Nairobi that Wanjiru had survived the fall from the balcony, but was then killed with a blow to the head from a "blunt object."

Injuries on his hands and knees from the fall showed the athlete landed "cat-style" from the balcony, with Njue saying he was "convinced that the deceased was hit after he fell on the ground by another person."

Wanjiru's hard and fast marathoning style revolutionised the sport and set the stage for string of world record-breaking runs by other Kenyan runners.

His victory at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, where he ran an Olympic record of 2:06.32 in extreme heat and secured the country's first Olympic gold for the distance, is widely considered to be the greatest marathon performance of all time.

The government ordered an inquest after three separate post mortems suggested different causes of death.

The inquest continues, with more than 30 people expected to be called to give evidence.

Read more on:    athletics

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

How much of a runner are you?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.