By Ros Satar
- Mo Farah wins a sixth World Championships title, as he battled through a competitive 10,000m field
- Usain Bolt stumbled but barrelled into the 100m semi-finals
- All four British women in the 1500m field make it to the semi-finals
LONDON, UK – The IAAF World Championships kicked off in fine style,, capped with Sir Mo Farah winning a riveting 10,000m for a sixth Gold medal.
All four Brits through to the Women’s 1500m semi-finals
The evening started well, with Laura Muir leading the quartet of Brits into the semi-finals. First up was Jessica Judd, putting up a PB after running a very gutsy heat hitting the front at the start to make sure she could get in a fast enough time to avoid the agonising wait.
Muir’s heat was a competitive affair, as she did enough to stay in the pack at the end with Laura Weightman keeping herself out of trouble in the final heat. It was the second fastest heat of the three, seeing Sarah McDonald waiting surreptitiously by the scoreboard to see if she had qualified as she nabbed the final fastest loser qualifying spot. The semi-finals are on Saturday.
Usain Bolt stumbles his way to an opening win
It took a PB from Reece Prescod to become the first Brit through in the men’s 100m heats as a warm up to Usain Bolt’s appearance, capably followed by CJ Ujah. A few boos greeted the announcement of Justin Gatlin, who came through comfortably after one faulty and one false start.
All of this was just a warm up for Bolt, with Britain’s James Dasaolu, as a supporting act. The purple and gold shoes of the big man had some work to do, as his lumbering pick-up saw him have to stretch out to catch up with the field in the first 30m, charging past them and having the time to check out the field at the finish. He admitted in the mixed zone that he stumbled out of the blocks – he was not a fan, calling them the worst he had ever seen.
It was not vintage – but it was good enough to get him (literally) over the line, with Dasaolu also making it through the first round heats.
Fantastic Farah grabs the Gold
Only one medal was going to be decided on First Friday – and the man of the (almost half) hour was Mo Farah. This was never going to be an easy race, and nothing could be taken for granted.
Gesturing to the crowd to get going, and despite settling on the outside around the middle of the back, he settled towards the rear of the pack as the Kenyans and Ugandans took the race by the scruff of the neck.
With Geoffrey Kamworor and Joshua Cheptegei stringing them out initially and then letting the pack stay in contention all eyes were in Farah as he started to move up for the first time sitting on the shoulder of Shadrack Kipchirchir.
Cheptegei was trying to wave someone on to take up the lead, Paul Tanui taking up and again a relaxed-looking Farah sped up the side again urging the crowd the roar him on as he slotted in behind Kamworor and Cheptegei.
Another shift in pace saw the three Kenyans hit the front with Farah boxed in a little by the Ethiopian runners, stretching down the back straight to pick up the pace with half the race to go.
With it looking like one of the quicker 10,000m we have seen, they hit the last mile with Farah still looking very much in contention for a testing finish. Getting out of the way of some pushing and bunching as Abadi Hadis hit the front while Farah was contending with clips and bumps.
Farah needed to hit the front decisively as he hit the bell. The crowd were screaming him on and a couple of heat-stopping trips by way of Tanui’s flailing feet, and Farah had to kick for the hardest fought win, and a sixth World Championship Gold medal in his career – 26:49.51.
Day 2 begins at 10am, BST.
Main Image: Photo by IAN LANGSDON/EPA/REX/Shutterstock
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