Cheptegei in for inaugural Athletix Grand Prix

Joshua Cheptegei will miss most, if not all, of the IAAF Diamond League this year, as well as the African Championships. AFP PHOTO / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images

Uganda middle distance champion Joshua Cheptegei has confirmed that he will be taking part in the inaugural Athletix Grand Prix Series, in South Africa in March.

According to Athletics South Africa, Cheptegei will compete in the first two meetings, at the Ruimsig Stadium in Johannesburg on March 1 and at the Tuks Stadium seven days later.

ASA said in a media release: "The Athletix Grand Prix Series consists of three meetings and Cheptegei will run in the first two.

"But whether he will run a 1500m or 3000m is still being decided. Either distance will suit the man who is hailed to take over from Mo Farah as the best middle distance athlete."

Cheptegi, a world 10,000m silver medalist and a medal hopeful for Uganda at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, is expected to compete against South Africa's finest middle distance athletes, including Jerry Motsau.

Dominic Otuchet, President of the Uganda Athletics Federation (UAF) says that having Cheptegei compete in South Africa will help him improve his speed ahead of the Commonwealth Games.

"This is a big boost for Cheptegei because the season has started early and he needs to prepare with some races under his belt," Otuchet told KweséESPN.

Cheptegei was of a similar mind, and said in the release: "I am running the 5000m at the Commonwealth Games in April and this series is the perfect opportunity for me to fine tune for the competition."

Last month he won the 2018 Cross Internacional de Itálica in Santiponce on the outskirts of the Spanish city of Seville.