Running royalty Mo Farah erased any doubt over his status as one of Britain’s greatest athletes, following flawless performances at the 14th World Championships in Athletics in Moscow this week.
The reigning 5,000m and 10,000m Olympic Champion took gold in both of his events, defending the 5,000m title he won in Daegu in 2011 and securing him the double-double – the mountainous task of holding both Olympic and world titles for both the 5,000m and 10,000m. 30 year old Farah became only the second man in history to get a grip on the elusive double-double, joining Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele.
Somali-born Farah was forced to earn his victory in the 10,000m at the hands of the defending world champion, Ethiopia’s Ibrahim Jeilan, who shook off Farah in 2011 to claim gold but was unable to do so this time. Jeilan forced Farah into a 54 second last lap in humid conditions and a gripping sprint finish saw Farah cross the line in 27 minutes and 21.71 seconds, a whisker ahead of Jeilan who had to settle for 27 minutes and 22.23 seconds and his turn at holding the silver.
…claiming his place at the front…
The 5,000m was a little less dramatic, and although being only one of two runners in the 15-man final who ran in the 10,000m final, Farah had a control over the pack that was never genuinely challenged. Despite formless attempts by eventual silver and bronze medallists Gebrhiwet and Koech, Farah refused any opportunity to overtake him, claiming his place at the front about 600m out and not letting it go.
Farah’s victories this week only add to an already glittering CV and the belief that we’ve only got a mere glimpse of his potential will only fuel Britain’s addiction with the captivating career of its best athlete.