East African Showdown On Tap At World XC Championships

  • By Duncan Larkin
  • Published Mar. 22, 2013
  • Updated Mar. 22, 2013 at 9:39 AM UTC
Imane Merga is the man to beat in Poland this weekend. Photo:

Three nations could contend for the title in Poland.

This weekend, elite runners from all over the world  will convene on the Polish city of Bydgoszcz to compete in the 40th edition of the IAAF World Cross-Country Championships.

Athletics Weekly has profiled the race across the various titles.

In the men’s senior 12K, a big question mark hovers over the Kenyan contingent. After all, Philemon Rono and Timothy Kiptoo, who placed first and second in their country’s selection race, haven’t even broken 13:20 for the 5000m.

This means the rival Ethiopian team stands a good chance of taking the gold medal.

Leading that nation’s team is defending champion Imane Merga. However, Merga dropped out of the Ethiopian selection race, so his fitness is suspect.

Uganda could also stand on the podium. Moses Kipsiro, who won silver in 2009 and bronze in 2010, is at the top of the start list wearing his country’s singlet.

In the women’s senior 12K event, defending champion Tirunesh Dibaba will not compete because of an injury.

For More: Athletics Weekly

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Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin

Duncan Larkin is the news editor at and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.

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