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Newz Forum: OLYMPICS: Gebrselassie 'may pull out'

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posted on Aug, 16 2004 @ 02:01 PM
Ethiopian running legend Haile Gebrselassie could miss the Olympics because of an Achilles injury. The two-time 10,000m Olympic champion was hoping to collect his third gold medal in the final on Friday night.

But according to his manager, Jos Hermens, his chances of making it to Athens are "not looking brilliant".

"We don't know whether he will miss the Games," said Hermens. Gebrselassie, 31, will leave track athletics behind after Athens and focus on the marathon.

National track coach, Wolde-Meskel Kostre, admitted time was running out.

"Haile has been having a problem with his left leg," he said.

"He has been instructed by the doctor to do only light training.

"But we still have until a few days before the race to see how he is doing."

Gebrselassie has dominated long-distance running for almost a decade, also winning four world 10,000m titles. But he has recently suffered a dip in form. He was beaten at last year's world championships by his team-mate and training partner, Kenenisa Bekele, who is also the current 5000m and 10,000m world record holder. Getanuh Tessema, who works with Gebrselassie's manager Jos Hermens, said the runner would do everything he could to compete.

"The injury has been causing him trouble," he said.

"But that's Haile. He wants to fight till the very end."

If Gebrselassie did pull out, he would be replaced by world cross-country silver medallist Gebre-egziabher Gebremariam. Bekele, aged 22, is entered for both 5000m and 10,000m in Athens.



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