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Kenyans beware: Tiru’s back

Monday January 2 2012

Tirunesh Dibaba after winning the Africa 10,000

Tirunesh Dibaba after winning the Africa 10,000 metres title in Nairobi in 2010. “Tiru” is back after injury. PHOTO/ FILE | NATION 


Double Olympic champion Tirunesh Dibaba returned to racing after a long lay-off with a victory over the weekend.

The Ethiopian star won the 47th San Silvestre Vallecana road race in a close finish over the 10-kilometre road race in 31 minutes and 30 seconds over another top Ethiopian runner, Gelete Burka (31:30).

It was Dibaba’s first competitive race since August, 2010, and the start of her build-up to the London Olympics where she is expected to challenge the Vivian Cheruiyot-led Kenyan galaxy.

Third in the Madrid race was Briton Susan Partridge (32:44) and fourth was home star and 2009 world steeplechase champion, Marta Dominguez (32:49).

In the men’s 10km, the surprise winner was young Ethiopian Hagos Gebrehiwot (17 years old) in 27:57.


He also won a close final metres sprint over Eritrean World Cross Country Championships medallist Teklemariam Medhin (also 27:57).

European Cross Country Championships medallist Ayad Lamdassem was third (28:10) with more home stars following, Chema Martinez fourth (28:34) and Jesus Espana fifth (28:41).