Olympic Games: Ethiopia Ahead of the Pack

Jamaica Gleaner

Published: Monday | August 18, 2008

AS JAMAICA dominated the sprints over the weekend, Ethiopia completed a similar sweep in the 10,000, with Kenenisa Bekele adding the men’s title on top of Tirunesh Dibaba’s win to show they are the world’s greatest long-distance runners.

Bekele won his second straight Olympic title in a 1-2 Ethiopian triumph, ahead of eternal runner-up Sileshi Sihine.

All-time great Haile Gebrselassie finished only sixth in his last 10,000, well behind bronze medalist Micah Kogo of Kenya.

“My bullet is finished,” Gebrselassie said of his faded kick.

Now Bekele will go for a long-distance double in the 5,000. Read More.

Kenenisa Bekele Reigns Supreme, Wins Gold
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The Official Website of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

August 18

(BEIJING) — World record holder Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia confirmed his supremacy in distance running by successfully defending his Olympic gold medal in the Men’s 10000m at the National Stadium on Sunday, August 17.

Bekele sliced almost four seconds off the Olympic record he set at the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, finishing in 27:01.17. The silver medalist was perennial minor medalist Sileshi Sihine of Ethiopia, who clocked 27:02.77, while Micah Kogo of Kenya won bronze in 27:04.11.

The caliber of the race was so high that the first four finishers all beat the old Olympic record of 27:05.10.

Kidane Tadesse of Eritrea controlled the pace for most of the early stages of the race, with Bekele content to sit in third position.

The pace picked up when former world record holder and two-time Olympic champion Haile Gebrselassie of Ethiopia took control at the 6000m mark. With seven laps to go, Athens bronze medalist Zersenay Tadese of Eritrea regained the lead before Koso went to the front after 8000m.

Seven runners were in the front pack with two laps remaining, but at the final lap bell Bekele pulled away from Sihine, eventually winning by 20m.

Bekele is the sixth man to have won back-to-back Olympic titles in the Men’s 10000m.

The Imperious Kenenisa Bekele
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Kenenisa Bekele celebrates winning the gold. (Photo credit: Mark Dadswell/Getty Images)

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Athletes compete in Men’s 10000m final. (Photo credit: Xinhua)

Continental Solidarity Behind Dibaba
BBC
BY Adnan Nawaz
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16 Aug 08

Africa had to wait until day seven of competition to win its first gold medal of the 2008 Olympics.

The entire continent celebrated as Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia won the women’s 10,000m in the Bird’s Nest Stadium, and then, on day eight, there was more glory for Africa to enjoy as Zimbabwe’s Kirsty Coventry took gold while setting a new world record in the women’s 200m backstroke.

It had been a long wait for Africa, but when triumph was finally achieved there was great evidence of continental solidarity among the African media here in Beijing. Read More.

Ethiopia’s Golden Girl: Dibaba Wins Women’s 10000m
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From the Official Website of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

(BEIJING, August 15) — Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia has won gold and set a new Olympic record in the Women’s 10000m at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games on August 15.

Dibaba’s time of 29:54.66 was enough to break the old record of 30:17.49 set by fellow Ethiopian Derartu Tulu and hold off silver medalist Elvan Abeylegess of Turkey (also born in Ethiopia) who ran a time of 29:56.34. Bronze went to Shalane Flanagan of the United States in a time of 30:22:22.

The world record of 29:31.78 seconds in this event is held by China’s Wang Junxia China, set in 1993. Read More.

The Golden Girl
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Tirunesh Dibaba Kenene celebrates after crossing the line.
(Photo credit: Mark Dadswell/Getty Images)

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Elvan Abeylegesse of Turkey (born in Ethiopia) and Tirunesh Dibaba Kenene.
(Photo credit: Mark Dadswell/Getty Images)

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Tirunesh Dibaba Kenene celebrates. (Photo credit: Mark Dadswell/Getty Images)

Dibaba planning long-distance double
Reuters

By Sabrina Yohannes

Thursday, August 14, 2008

BEIJING (Reuters) – World 10,000-metre champion Tirunesh Dibaba says she expects to run both the 10,000 and 5,000m events in Beijing, hoping to become the first woman to scoop the Olympic distance double.

In 2005 Dibaba became the first woman to win both races at a world championships when she led an Ethiopian podium sweep in both events in Helsinki.

She retained the 10,000 title in Osaka last year after suffering from abdominal pain mid-race but skipped the 5,000 days later.

“My expectation is that I will run both,” she told Reuters after arriving in Beijing. “It’s being said that it’s a little hot here, so the final decision will be made after the 10,000.” Read more at Guardian.


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