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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Lagat eyes 1,500-5,000m double in Beijing

Lagat eyes 1,500-5,000m double in Beijing

July 02, 2008 16:18 IST

World 1,500 and 5,000 metres champion Bernard Lagat will run the same events in Beijing if he qualifies for the US team in the shorter event.

"I'm going to double," the Kenyan-born Lagat told reporters a day after winning the 5,000 at the US trials to make his first American Olympic team.

"I did it last year (in the World Championships) and I am confident, I'm healthy and I'm really strong this year," he said, adding that it was the first time he had said publicly he would run both events.

"I feel like if I don't run the 5,000 I will be wasting a chance," said Lagat, twice an Olympic 1,500 metres medallist for Kenya. "I think I have a strong chance of medalling in the 5,000 as well."

Competition in the 1,500 begins on Thursday with the semi-finals on Friday and the final on Sunday.

The order will be reversed in Beijing with the 1,500 metres due to be completed before the 5,000 begins.

American record holder Alan Webb, Mexican-born Leonel Manzano and Sudanese native Lopez Lomong are expected to be Lagat's main challengers at the trials.

"But I think I can do it," the 33-year-old Lagat said.

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