Meseret Defar of Ethiopia (photo: AFP/Getty Images)

Meseret Defar of Ethiopia (photo: AFP/Getty Images)

Exactly one month from today (17), the IAAF World Indoor Championships Portland 2016 will get underway at the Oregon Convention Center.

The new IAAF World Indoor Tour has provided the perfect platform for athletes to test their form ahead of the championships on 17-20 March, so much so that some athletes who had initially ruled out competing in Portland are now starting to reconsider.

Meseret Defar’s certainty in her own comeback was so low she had made no racing plans whatsoever after her first race. After running 8:30.83, a time only nine other women have ever bettered indoors, on Sunday evening in Boston, Defar already had her eye on another race in the USA next month.

With the World Indoor Championships returning to the USA for the first time in almost 30 years – the first edition was in Indianapolis in 1987 – the World Indoor Tour’s only stop in the USA sparked more mixed-zone discussion of the global championship than usual.

Defar, who has a remarkable four world indoor 3000m titles, immediately saw Portland as a natural next step for her comeback, and was practically itching to find races to sharpen her racing skills should she be selected for the Ethiopian team.

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