Belfast Telegraph

Mo Farah defends 10,000m world title at World Championships

Sir Mo Farah completed the first stage of his golden track finale after a thrilling defence of his 10,000 metres title at the World Championships.

The 34-year-old, who will retire from the track later this month, won in 26 minutes 49.51 seconds to claim his sixth world title.

Farah shrugged off continued doping allegations to mount a second defence of the 10,000m in London after victories in Moscow in 2013 and Beijing two years ago.

Farah told BBC Sport: "It was amazing. I had to get my head around it and I got a bit emotional at the start. I had to get in the zone.

"It wasn't an easy race. I work on everything and it's been a long journey.

"What a way to end my career in London. It's special."

Farah continued: "I knew at 12 laps to go when they went hard from there I knew it was going to be tough. It was about believing in my sprint finish and knowing that I have been in that position before. It helped a lot having that experience.

"That was a special moment for me. I miss spending time with them (my family). To have my family on the track is very special. Anything is possible if you train hard."

Farah hung on during a relentlessness race which began at a blistering pace with Kenya's Geoffrey Kamworor and Paul Tanui and Uganda's Joshua Cheptegei and Timothy Toroitich putting the pressure on at the front.

But Farah, not beaten over 10,000m since 2011, remained comfortable and made his move with a lap-and-a-half to go - and won in a sprint finish ahead of Cheptegei and Tanui.

Only Farah had won the 5,000m and 10,000m double at the World Championships twice in a row after his previous victories and he is now on course to claim it for a third time.

He will race again in the 5,000m heats on Wednesday ahead of his expected appearance in the final next Saturday.

Farah will focus on the marathon after ending his track career at the Diamond League final in Zurich later this month, after racing in the same competition on August 20.

Earlier, Laura Muir eased into the semi-final of the 1,500 metres on the opening day in London.

The 24-year-old, a double European Indoor champion, finished fourth in four minutes 08.97 seconds to qualify for Saturday's semi-final.

She kept plenty in reserve and will be joined by Laura Weightman, Sarah McDonald and Jessica Judd as they all bid to reach Monday's final.

Muir said: "It was brilliant out there on the start line. In terms of major events, being at Glasgow 2014 helped and doing a few rounds at Belgrade was good so I'm lucky I've got a few championships under my belt now. To have that support out there was great. It feels like a real positive.

"I'm really happy with where I'm at. Training has been going really well so I just want to get through the rounds and save as much energy as possible for the final."

The top six in each of the three heats went through and Judd finished sixth in the first heat, which was won by the defending champion Genzebe Dibaba.

Weightman also moved into Saturday's semi-final after fourth place in the third and final heat.

McDonald scraped through as a fastest loser after finishing ninth, with a personal best of 4mins 05.48 secs, in the third heat at the London Stadium.

Judd won a bronze medal at the 2011 World Youth Championships and a silver medal at the 2012 World Junior Championships but is yet to win a senior medal.

She said: "That was amazing, it was so good. To get a PB was fantastic - I've never heard a cheer like that ever. That is the highlight of my year, my life, it was just fantastic.

"It was stacked, I thought 'Oh goodness it's going to be really hard'. I didn't expect to go off that hard, I couldn't hear myself breathe. I normally go off my breathing, how I'm feeling and I couldn't even hear it, so I thought I've just got to keep going."

In the 100m, all three British sprinters reached Saturday's semi-finals.

Reece Prescod qualified in 10.03 seconds, with CJ Ujah joining him in 10.07 seconds and James Dasaolu coming home second behind Usain Bolt in the sixth heat in 10.13 seconds.

Prescod said: "My first World Championships I come out with a PB in the first round - I can't really complain. I've just got to bring my best really. Being in front of a home crowd it's great, this is what athletics is all about - I loved it."

Meanwhile, Nick Percy failed to reach the discus final but Holly Bradshaw reached the pole vault final.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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