Report from the evening session on day seven of the IAAF World Championships in Moscow which saw Mo Farah retain the 5000m title
Mo Farah became only the second man in history to do the distance ‘double double’ on Friday, adding the 5000m world title to the 10,000m gold he claimed in the Luzhniki Stadium on Saturday and his Olympic titles from London last summer.
As in the 10,000m there were no plans or tactics from his rivals that could hold Farah off. Again the Briton was pretty much left to dictate and as the pace picked up the kicks of the Kenyans and Ethiopia’s Hagos Gebrhiwet couldn’t touch the master tactician’s finishing strength.
Farah claimed his fifth major championship title in 13:26.98 as Gebrhiwet and Kenyan Isiah Koech followed him home in 13:27.26 with just one thousandth of a second between the minor medallists.
Koech offered the biggest challenge as the race neared its conclusion, but even then Farah had more than enough left to show his rivals a clean pair of heels as well as a Mobot as he crossed the line.
If there was ever any doubt, Farah is well on the way to cementing himself as one of the greatest greats. In claiming the 5000m title the 30-year-old matched a feat of Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele who won double gold at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 before claiming matching world titles in Berlin 12 months later. However, the Brit doesn’t yet have a world record to his name. But there is time for that.
Speaking of time, his last lap was a typically speedy 53.51, with the final 200m of that timed at 26.70. He clocked 2:22.28 in his final kilometre and later admitted he was pleased with the early pace remaining slow as he was suffering a stitch.
Farah’s training partner Galen Rupp was the only athlete in the field also running both distances in Moscow. The American finished just outside the medals in the 10,000m but could only manage eighth over half the distance, as team-mate Bernard Lagat led his nation home in sixth.
Fraser-Pryce another athlete to do double in Moscow
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce achieved something no other has done at the Worlds since 1991 in claiming the women’s sprint double. Having secured success over 100m on Monday, the Jamaican showed she really is the current sprint queen in clocking 22.17 for gold over double the distance.
There was a second sprint silver for Murielle Ahouré of the Ivory Coast, while Nigerian Blessing Okagbare added a bronze to the long jump silver already claimed.
Olympic champion Allyson Felix, a pre-race favourite despite arriving in Moscow some way off her top form, never got the chance to feature in the race as she pulled up and fell to the track before being carried off by her brother. A later ultrasound scan revealed a tear in her right hamstring, ruling her out of further competition in Moscow.
Relay dominant from USA
The first of the relay titles went to the USA who, without any challenge, were left to battle the clock and came away with a world-leading 2:58.71 for their efforts. That left a race for silver, with Jamaica and Russia crossing the line just two hundredths of a second apart to take silver and bronze respectively.
The GB team had been shaken up a little from the first round quartet of Conrad Williams, Michael Bingham, Jamie Bowie and Martyn Rooney. Williams, Bingham and Rooney still featured, but Rooney took on the second leg, Bingham the third and Nigel Levine came in for the anchor. A more conservative performance meant GB were never a threat and after Levine found himself boxed in on the back straight it was too little too late as he tried to make up the lost time on the home straight to clock 3:00.88 for fourth.
Menkov jumps to it to delight home crowd
Aleksandr Menkov broke the Russian record with his best leap of 8.56m to win the men’s long jump competition to the delight of the home crowd.
Such was his display that any of his three best jumps would have been enough for victory ahead of Ignisious Gaisah, who set a Dutch record with his 8.29m for silver, and Mexico’s Luis Rivera, whose fifth-round effort of 8.27m bagged him the bronze.
The Russian went into the competition with seven wins from nine competitions under his belt and that includes his victory at the World Indoor Championships. His consistency meant he was one of the favourites, although given his sixth and 11th place finishes at the 2011 worlds and 2012 Olympics respectively, victory was by no means guaranteed.
Rivera had been the last to beat him, but after Menkov jumped 8.52m in the third round it was more a battle for the minor medals.
Defending champion Dwight Phillips, a four-time winner of the title, exited the competition at this point, his best of 7.88m only enough for 11th, as Gaisah unleashed his record-breaking best and Rivera improved by ten centimetres in the following round.
A total of six men bettered the 8.20m mark, the medallists joined by Spain’s Eusebio Caceres, Brazil’s Mauro da Silva and Germany’s Christian Reif in that feat.
Lysenko retains title
A little earlier and Tatyana Lysenko had already given the home fans something to cheer about as she recorded the second-biggest throw of all time with her championship record-breaking 78.80m.
It ended up being a battle between the reigning world and Olympic champion and Poland’s Anita Wlodarczyk for the title. As Lysenko started strongly, Wlodarczyk responded with a best of 78.46m in the fourth round which eventually saw her take silver along with a national record. Bronze went to Zhang Wenxiu of China, her 75.58m placing her just ahead of compatriot Zheng Wang who managed a personal best 74.90m.
Storl takes shot title
David Storl retained his shot put title with a season’s best 21.73m enough to see him ahead of US favourite Ryan Whiting and Canada’s Dylan Armstrong.
Germany’s Olympic silver medallist once again performed well on the big stage to take the title, despite his winning throw initially being ruled as a foul. The decision was disputed by the German and later overturned, however, with the likes of Whiting, his American team-mate Resse Hoffa and Armstrong unable to respond.
That meant Whiting had to settle for silver with 21.57m, while 21.34m from Armstrong bagged him the bronze ahead of 2007 world champion Hoffa who just missed the medals with a second-round throw of 21.12m. Poland’s two-time Olympic champion Tomasz Majewski had to make do with 20.98m for sixth as he is not yet back to his best following shoulder surgery during the off-season.
Gemili on fire with sub-20 200m in semis
Adam Gemili became only the second-ever Briton to run sub-20 seconds over 200m as he clocked 19.98 to win the third semi-final. Only John Regis in 1994 has ever gone quicker and the time puts the 19-year-old in a good position ahead of Saturday’s final where he’ll be pushed even harder.
A 19.97 personal best from US sprinter Curtis Mitchell was the only other sub-20 clocking and the pair will line up alongside the likes of Usain Bolt, who eased through to the final with a comfortable 20.12, his Jamaican compatriots Nickel Ashmeade and Warren Weir, South Africa’s Anaso Jobodwana, Churandy Martina of the Netherlands and Norway’s Jaysuma Saidy Ndure.
Gemili’s GB team-mates James Ellington and Delano Williams clocked respective times of 20.44 and 20.61 which weren’t enough to see them through as Isiah Young, Wallace Spearmon and Jimmy Vicaut were also among the casualties.
O’Hare through to 1500m final
Great Britain will have a finalist in the men’s 1500m as Chris O’Hare ran a strong and tactical race to advance ahead of the likes of Olympic silver medallist Leo Manzano and 2008 Olympic silver medallist Nick Willis.
Using similar tactics to his team-mate Hannah England, the US-based Scot gambled on sticking to the kerb and was able to move through when a gap opened up from Lomong moving wide, the Brit finishing fourth in 3:43.58.
Asbel Kiprop took the first semi-final in 3:43.30 ahead of fellow Kenyan Silas Kiplagat, Ethiopian Mekonnen Gebremedhin, O’Hare and Johan Cronje of South Africa. The second semi-final was won by Kenya’s Nixon Chepseba in 3:35.88 ahead of USA’s Matthew Centrowitz, Mohamed Moustaoui of Morocco, Florian Carvalho of France and Norway’s Henrik Ingebrigtsen.
Germany’s Homiyu Tesfaye and Canada’s Homiyu Tesfaye advanced on time as 800m bronze medallist Ayanleh Souleiman and Olympic bronze medallist Abdaalati Iguider were among the casualties from the second semi-final.
Johnson-Montano in as Okoro and Muir out in 800m semis
GB’s 800m runners didn’t share O’Hare’s success as both Marilyn Okoro and Laura Muir were among the semi-final casualties.
Muir knew only a personal best would do to see her through to the final and despite another strong run from the 20-year-old her 2:00.83 wasn’t enough for her to advance. A slower race didn’t suit Okoro whose time of 2:02.26 saw her also cross the line in seventh.
US trials winner Alysia Johnson-Montano ran 1:58.92 to lead the qualifiers and her compatriots Brenda Martinez and Ajee Wilson join her in the final, as do Nataliia Lupu of Ukraine, Russia’s Ekaterina Poistogova and Mariya Savinova, Lenka Masná of the Czech Republic and Kenya’s Eunice Jepkoech Sum.
» Full results from Moscow can be found here