Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Men's 5000 M Heats Preview

The men's 5,000M going to be a thrilling race. The reason is that it’s wide open yet there is a outside chance for multiple Ethiopian medals.

World Champion Bernard Lagat (USA) will be running the 5,000. In what is a major disappointment of the US, he failed to qualify for 1,500 M finals. Actually Deresse Mekonen was nipping at his heals and almost overtook him at the end. Lagat is probably fighting an injury. But if he is healthy, a rested Legat is a dangerous Legat.

I think the best Kenyan 5,000 M runner at the moment is Moses Masai, 3rd place finisher at the 10,000 M. But lucky for us Kenya is not running him in the 5,000 M. Without Masai, the Kenyan team is still a loaded team. Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) second place finisher in Osaka and Olympic silver medalist is a very dangerous runner. So far this year, Eliud Kipchoge beat Tariku Bekele in Ostrava and again in Rome. Hope he does not make that a habit.

Moses Kipsiro of Uganda, 3rd place finisher in Osaka. He is only 22 and a very dangerous runner.

And then there is Soe Min Thu (MYA) , - Myanmar – Burma. Soe Min Thu has a personal best time of 15:16.23. His best time would not qualify him for the Women’s finals. I should be more polite as Burmese are very kind and the most polite people you would find on the planet. Having traveled there, I have a soft spot for the people of Burma. It’s easy – almost natural for an Ethiopian sense repression and relate. It would be hard to pass without commenting that China is the primary supporter of the repressive regime that doles out misery. The people of Burma will be cheering on their native son because one still cheers their countrymen regradless of the govenrment running it. Well, I can relate to that too. Good luck to Soe Min Thu. Hope he sets a personal best.

Returning to the 5,000 M, there are three heats and in each heat the Ethiopian runner has the best 2008 time. The three, Abraham Cherkos, Tariku Bekele and Kenenisa Bekele are in great shape this year. It should be a jog for the them.

The things to watch for:
1- How does Kenenisa look?
2- How well do Tariku and Abraham assert themselves in the heats? Do they take control of the heat? How confident do they look?
3- Does Legat make it to the finals? Is he in good shape?

What are your thoughts?

9 comments:

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