Cheptegei retains world 10,000m title in Oregon

GOLD – CHEPTEGEI Joshua 12:58.15

Only in the final lap did the man who holds the world record of 26:11.00 move into top gear to take on and then dismiss the challenge of the Ethiopian who beat him to Olympic gold at this distance last summer, Selemon Barega.

After his team-mates Stephen Kissa, who eventually finished 24th and last, and Jacob Kiplimo, who eventually added a bronze to the one he won in Tokyo last summer, had ensured the pace throughout was brisk without being extravagant, Cheptegei found himself perfectly placed to claim another global gold.

When the bell went the presence of two Americans in a group of seven medal contenders meant the noise levels rose to the heights, and around the final bend Cheptegei and Barega appeared to be contesting the gold.


Down the final straight, however, the Ugandan proved unchallengeable and the Ethiopian eventually slipped back to fifth place as three runners came past him.

The first was the relatively unknown 22-year-old Kenyan, Stanley Mburu, who fell early in the opening lap and almost went down again a few laps later, but still had enough to earn unexpected silver in 27:27.90. Kiplimo had enough of a finish to take third place in 27:27.97, with fast-finishing home runner Grant Fisher passing Barega a couple of metres before the line to place fourth in 27:28.14, with Barega clocking 27:28.39.

While Barega was unable to fly the Ethiopian flag on the track, his compatriot Tamirat Tola was more successful earlier in the day as he won the men’s marathon in a Championship record of 2hr 05min 36sec. The world marathon silver medallist of 2017 became the world marathon gold medallist of 2022 after a masterful and ruthless run over three laps of a looped 14km course through Eugene and Springfield which saw him come home more than a minute clear.

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