(Sporting Alert) — Ethiopian super star Kenenisa Bekele returned to big time form on Sunday after he held off a late surge from Britain’s Mo Farah to win the Great North Run (13.1 miles) in an exciting sprint to the finish.
Watch Kenenisa Bekele v Mo Farah at Great North Run
Another Ethiopian great, Haile Gebrselassie, was third.
The build up to race was fully of excitement and pair didn’t let the fans down in the thrilling contest.
Farah, the double world and Olympic champion over 5,000m and 10,000m, used some of that speed he should on the track to cut Bekele’s big lead in the last 400m, but the Ethiopian, who promised to deliver for his fans found another kick in the closing metres to pull away again from the Briton sensation.
Bekele took the win in time of one hour and nine seconds.
“It was amazing,” he said. “Since before the World Championships I was concentrating on training hard.
“I’m feeling confident, I trained well and in the end I did it.”
He was happy with second place, but you could tell Farah, who clocked one hour and 10 seconds wanted this one.
“I’m disappointed but I was second to a great athlete,” said Farah after finishing in one hour and 10 seconds.
“When Kenenisa went with a mile to go, I thought the pace was ridiculous,” Farah aded.
“I thought I could come back. It came to the last 200m, right to the line. It was a great race and a great finish.
“He has great speed and it came down to the last 200 metres and right to the line, but it was a great race and Haile did most of the work and kept pushing and pushing.”
In the women’s race, Kenya’s Priscah Jeptoo just missed breaking the course record as she came home first in one hour, five minutes and 44 seconds.
The Kenyan defeated the highly Ethiopian favorites, Meseret Defar and Tirunesh Dibaba, who finished second and third, respectively.