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Rediff.com  » Sports » World Athletics: Ayana denies Dibaba with stunning 5,000m gold

World Athletics: Ayana denies Dibaba with stunning 5,000m gold

Last updated on: August 30, 2015 18:35 IST

Almaz Ayana of Ethiopia celebrates after winning gold and setting new championship record in the Women's 5000 metres final. Photograph: Ian Walton/Getty Images

Ethiopia's Almaz Ayana put on a brilliant display of front-running to win the women's 5,000 metres at the world championships on Sunday and deprive compatriot Genzebe Dibaba of an unprecedented double gold.

The 23-year-old broke for home with four laps to go and clocked a championship record 14 minutes 26.83 seconds to win by more than 17 seconds, leading home an Ethiopian podium sweep.

Dibaba, who was hoping to become the first woman to win both the 1,500m and 5,000m at the same world championships or Olympics, was pipped at the line by compatriot Senbere Teferi, who took silver in 14.44.07.

To add insult to injury, the championship record Ayana bettered was set by bronze medallist Dibaba's sister Tirunesh at the 2005 world championships.

Kenyan Kiprop retains 1,500 title with late surge

Asbel Kiprop of Kenya crosses the finish line to win gold in the Men's 1500 metres final ahead of Abdalaati Iguider of Morocco. Photograph: Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Kenya's Asbel Kiprop won the world title at 1,500 metres for the third time on Sunday, the 2011 and 2013 champion producing a late charge from 12th place to first in the last half-lap to take gold on Sunday.

The tall and leggy Kiprop, 26, strode majestically to the finish and clocked 3 minutes 34.40 seconds, running the final lap in 51 seconds as his rivals battled and stumbled behind him to the line.

Kiprop won Kenya's seventh gold medal of this world championships, his team mate Elijah Manangoi took the silver in 3:34.63 and Morocco's Abdelaati Iguider threw himself across the line to secure the bronze in 3:34.67. 

Jamaica take women's 4x400 gold despite Felix heroics

Novlene Williams-Mills of Jamaica crosses the line to win gold ahead of Francena McCorory of the United States in the Women's 4x400 Relay Final. Photograph: Lintao Zhang/Getty Images for IAAF

Jamaica stunned the United States in the last women's track race of the world championships as Novlene Williams-Mills snatched the 4x400 metres relay gold by passing Francena McCorory in the final 10 metres of a thrilling race.

Jamaica had held a 15-metre lead over the United States at half-way, after strong runs by Christine Day and Shericka Jackson, only to see America's individual 400m champion, Allyson Felix deliver an astonishing leg to chase down and catch Stephenie Ann McPherson and hand over the stick for the anchor leg with a slight lead.

Felix's leg of the relay was timed unofficially at 47.7sec but it was to prove in vain as Novlene Williams-Mills rana shrewd final lap to overhaul a tiring Francena McCorory and win Jamaica's third relay gold medal of the Beijingchampionships, and her nation's seventh of the week.

Jamaica clocked 3min 19.13sec, to the United States' 3:19.44 with Britain taking bronze in 3:23.62.

Dibaba out-sprints Kiprop to thrilling marathon win

 

Ethiopia's Mare Dibaba crosses the finish line to win gold in the Women's Marathon final at the 15th IAAF World Athletics Championships at Beijing National Stadium in Beijing on Sunday. Photograph: Christian Petersen/Getty Images for IAAF

Ethiopia's Mare Dibaba won the women's marathon at the world athletics championships after a thrilling sprint finish along the home straight of the Beijing National Stadium on Sunday.

The 25-year-old Dibaba out-kicked Kenya's Helah Kiprop to win the gruelling event by just one second, crossing the finish line in two hours, 27 minutes and 35 seconds.

The long-striding Kiprop briefly threatened to take the gold medal when she loomed up on the outside of Dibaba with 50 metres left to run but couldn't get past the pint-sized Ethiopian.

Kiprop faded slightly and had to settle for the silver medal, while the bronze went to the reigning Asian champion Eunice Kirwa, who was born in Kenya but now competes for Bahrain.

Ethiopia has a long and proud tradition in marathon running but Dibaba was the first Ethiopian female to win the lung-sapping event at the world championships.

"I'm so happy to get the first medal for my country," she said through a translator.

"Just after 40km, I tried to test them. I came out in front because I wanted to control. Then we came into the stadium, I just tried my best.

"I take off and I win the marathon."

Dibaba went into the race as the favourite after recording the fastest time in the world this year but was unable to shake off her mostly East African challengers on a overcast morning in the Chinese capital where conditions were less brutal than usual.

There were still a dozen runners in the leading pack at the 30 kilometres mark but as the pace picked up, they slowly began to drop off.

Kenya's Helah Kiprop, Bahrain's Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa and Ethiopia's Mare Dibaba enter a cooling station during the Women's Marathon final on Sunday

Kenya's Helah Kiprop, Bahrain's Eunice Jepkirui Kirwa and Ethiopia's Mare Dibaba enter a cooling station during the Women's Marathon final on Sunday. Photograph: Andy Lyons/Getty Images

By the 35km mark, just six remained in the leading bunch, then five as they passed 40km.

Kenya's Edna Kiplagat, who won the last two world championships marathons, dropped from the leading group about two kilometres from the finish and settled for fifth.

But there were still four women in contention when they reached the Bird's Nest stadium. Kenya's Jemima Sumgong lost touch in the entry tunnel and missed out on the podium despite finishing just seven seconds behind the winner.

Dibaba dashed clear as they reached the edge of the track. Kirwa tried to go with her but had no energy left and settled for the bronze.

"I had pain in my leg, so I decided to stay behind (the leaders) as the pace continued pushing, pushing," she said.

"But at 35km, I see it's better to push the pace because I was looking towards the finish line."

Kiprop was the last to challenge Dibaba and although she came up short, she was pleased just to get on the podium, fearing she might be the unlucky one when the four leaders entered the stadium tunnel.

"Everyone was very strong, I was thinking that maybe I would be number four but at the end I saw it was possible for me to go and so I tried," she said.

"I feel very excited because I didn't expect (to win a medal). It was my first time to be at the world championships and the first time I represented my country."

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