Sunday, 9 March 2014
IAAF World Indoor Champs - men's 1500m heats and final report:
WRITTEN FOR THE IAAF WEBSITE -
Men’s 1500m heats report:
The men’s 1500m heats threw up many surprises, with 2011 world outdoor runner-up, Silas Kiplagat and 2012 world indoor bronze medallist, Mekonnen Gebremedhin failing to qualify for tomorrow’s final.
Kenya’s Kiplagat finished third in the second heat with 3:39.90, whilst Ethiopia’s Gebremedhin fell victim to the slow first heat, clocking only 3:47.22.
The mantle of fastest qualifier went to Ethiopia’s 2012 world indoor fourth-placer, Aman Wote, who claimed heat three with 3:36.75.
Also progressing with ease were the next three men behind him – Morocco’s 2012 world indoor champion and the Olympic bronze medallist, Abdalaati Iguider (3:37.83), US silver medallist, Will Leer (3:38.02) and Kenya’s Bethwel Birgen who registered 3:38.56.
Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman, the 21-year-old world outdoor 800m bronze medallist, stepped up in distance to win the second heat with 3:38.94, whilst New Zealand’s 2008 Olympic silver medallist, Nick Willis followed him home in 3:39.14.
The 2012 world indoor runner-up, Iham Tanui Ozbilen of Turkey did just enough to progress, courtesy of a 3:39.31 clocking for fifth place in heat three.
Further back, Mitja Krevs set a Slovenian record with 3:43.22 for seventh place in the second heat but it was not enough to qualify.
Men’s 1500m final report:
Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman completed his successful transition from the 800m discipline to capture the metric mile gold medal in 3:37.52.
In commanding fashion and showing tactical nous, the 21-year-old world outdoor 800m bronze medallist took the race by the scruff of the neck from the outset, passing the 400m mark in 59.21, 800m in 1:58.96 and picked up the pace to clock 26.26 between the 1200m and 1400m points before closing with a final 100m in 13.03.
Ethiopia’s Aman Wote collected the silver medal with 3:38.08 to make amends for finishing fourth in the 2012 edition of these championships, having moved into a medal position in the final third of the race.
Abdalaati Iguider could not retain his 2012 world indoor title but claimed the bronze medal with 3:38.21 to add to his Olympic medal of the same colour.
Turkey’s 2012 world indoor runner-up, Ilham Tanui Ozbilen placed fourth in 3:39.10 as 2012 world indoor 800m runner-up, Jakub Holusa of the Czech Republic finished in fifth with 3:39.23.
In sixth, the US silver medallist, Will Leer clocked 3:39.60 ahead of Germany’s Homiyu Tesfaye in 3:39.90 and Kenya’s Bethwell Birgen, who faded badly in the final lap with 3:40.66.
New Zealand’s 2008 Olympic silver medallist, Nick Willis originally finished in fourth but was later disqualified.