World U20 5000m champion, Benson Kiplangat will debut in his first International race at the 44th edition of the Almond Blossom Cross Country which is a World Athletics Gold level series race that will be held on Sunday (27) in Albufeira, Portugal.
Kiplagat shot into the global after winning the 5000m with a time of 13:20.37 while at the World U20 Athletics Championships that were at the Moi International Centre Kasarani in Nairobi.
The 18 year-old will not have an easy race as he will face off with one of the most established cross country champion Rodrique Kwizera from Burundi, who is leading the World Athletics Cross Country Tour.
Kwizera comes to this race with four cross country wins from last year, Soria, San Sebastian, Seville and Venta de Banos. He was only beaten once in Atapuerca where he took the race to tape with the timer deciding the winner.
The 22 year-old started the year on high in Portugal as he took the top honors at the European Champion Clubs Cross Country earlier this month.
Another title contender is Rodgers Kibet from Uganda who also ran alongside Kiplangat in Nairobi but managed to finish a distant seven, has also been lined up to fight for his first International victory as he finished in third at the Elgoibar in January this year and finished second last week at the Cross Cup in Belgium.
World U20 bronze medallist Habtom Samuel will also be on the start line as he also tries to fight for his first International title under his name. he was beaten to third last week in Belgium.