• Ethiopians Athlete Deksisa and Gobena Win in Mumbai marathon

    Solomon Deksisa arrived here as a firm favorite for the Tata Mumbai Marathon, stamped his authority, and became only the second Ethiopian to win the men’s title, staving off a spirited challenge from compatriot Shumet Akalnaw and Kenyan Joshua Kipkorir.

    The 23-year-old Ethiopian clocked 2:09:34s, 3:12s off his personal best achieved as a runner-up at the Rotterdam marathon two years ago.

    But Deksisa had enough reasons to celebrate; it was his first title in six races.

    Amane Gobena made it a memorable day for the Ethiopians, winning the women’s title.




    Deksisa may be a far cry from the likes of the legendary Abebe Bikila, who ran barefoot, and the magnificent long-distance runner Haile Gebrselassie, but he was the cynosure of all eyes once the Elite runners crossed the red-line start near about the CSMT.

    The three podium finishers censured the pacesetters — Kenyan Jacob Kendagor, Ugandan Ezekiel, and South African Xolisa Tyali — for not being up to the mark and also pointed out instances of amateur runners straying from their path and proving to be a hindrance.

    But, on an eventful Sunday when the temperature hit its peak in the morning hours, Deksisa was all by himself from the 35km mark, shrugging off a gallant attempt by the 29-year-old Akalnaw on the return Marine Drive stretch.


    With the field comprising runners with excellent credentials to bring down Kenyan Gideon Kipketer’s course record of 2:08:35s set in January 2016, there was much suspense as Deksisa looked at his watch, took a few swigs from the water bottle, and began his final kick on the concrete surface across the Arabian sea, some 2km from the finish.

    But, he gave up with happy thoughts of going to win his maiden marathon and keeping track of the immediate challenger, Akalnaw.

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  • Ethiopian Athletes Smashes 10KM Record In Valencia

    Tsehay Gemechu took 15 seconds off Tirunesh Dibaba’s Ethiopian 10km record at the Valencia 10K Ibercaja, while compatriot Chala Ketema Regasa smashed the course record at the IAAF Bronze Label event on Sunday.

    Held in the Spanish coastal city that played host to last year’s IAAF World Half Marathon Championships Valencia 2018, the winning times surpassed all expectations.

    On a colder than expected morning with the thermometer marking 6C, the women’s contest was a thrilling battle between Gemechu and Kenya’s Gloria Kite. Held at the same time as the men’s race, the pair ran at a steady 3:02/3:03-per-kilometre pace to reach halfway in 15:01.

    Although the pace slightly dropped in the second half, there were no significant changes until the eighth kilometre when Gemechu pulled away from Kite, going on to cross the finish line in a massive career best of 30:15, taking 44 seconds off the course record and moving to fifth on the world all-time list.

    Kite finished second in 30:26 to destroy her best by more than a minute. The third spot on the podium went to Kenya’s Evaline Chirchir whose time of 30:43 was also inside the previous course record. In the eighth, Trihas Gebre set a Spanish record of 31:39.

    The men’s race kicked off at a brisk pace of 2:43/2:45-per-kilometre with a six-man group led by then main favourites: Ethiopia’s Chala Ketema Regasa, Abayneh Degu and Batesfa Getahun, Uganda’s Stephen Kissa and Kenyans Matthew Kipkorir Kimeli, Edward Kibet and Vedic Cheruiyot.

    The halfway point was reached at 13:43, well on schedule to break the course record. First Kimeli, then Degu and later Girma lost ground and the event became a three-man fight between Kissa, Cheruiyot and Regasa with the Ugandan doing most of the front-running.

    They ran the closing kilometres together, but 10km debutant Regasa took advantage of his superior track speed (13:06.98) to overtake his opponents over the final 200 metres to romp home in 27:23 to Kissa’s 27:24 and Cheruiyot’s 27:26. Regasa’s time took 29 seconds off the previous course record.

    Further down the field, Spain’s 1995 world marathon champion Martín Fiz set a world M55 best with 31:36, taking 27 seconds off the previous mark.

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