Ethiopia’s Olympic 5,000 champion Defar readies world title bid

Meseret DefarEthiopian Olympic champion Meseret Defar Wednesday gets a first run out in the 5,000m after being pulled from a 10,000m showdown with teammate and runaway gold medallist Tirunesh Dibaba.

Dibaba, who ran the world-leading 5,000m time of 14:23.68 earlier this season at the Paris Diamond League meet, has also been pulled from the 5,000m as the Ethiopian Athletics Federation blood a raft of up-and-coming youngsters.

“I am not disappointed that the federation didn’t want us to try to double,” Dibaba said.

“We have run many years and the upcoming athletes need the experience. Because that was how it was explained to me I don’t have any regrets at all. I am happy that they are getting experience.”

Defar has one gold (2007), a silver and two bronzes over the distance and will be favourite in the absence of defending champion Vivian Cheruiyot of Kenya, who is expecting her first child.