Tesfaye and Abdi reestablish themselves among European elite

Homiyu Tesfaye (1500m) and Bashir Abdi (5000m) returned as top contenders in Europe with their performances last Sunday in Rabat and Hengelo, respectively.

Following a 4th place finish in the 1500m at the 2015 European Indoor Championships (Prague), Homiyu Tesfaye suffered an injury that prevented him from further competition in 2015.  Now fully recovered, Tesfaye’s ’16 campaign used lower-key events in Pliezhausen (600m in 1:17.52 personal best) and Rehlingen (800m in 1:47.44) as preparations for his first IAAF Diamond League meeting of the season in Rabat, Morocco on 22 May.  In a quality race won by Timothy Cheruiyot in 3:33.61 (’16 world no. 2) that also produced 3 of the top-6 times of the season, Tesfaye placed 5th in 3:35.05, overtaking the top European 1500m mark in ’16 from Briton Lee Emanual (3:36.29).  The time also puts Tesfaye at no. 12 on the ’16 world chart  for the event.

Bashir Abdi likewise had to battle injury during the latter stages of the 2015 season, which had seen him set new personal bests in the 3000m (7:40.44, Belgium all-time no. 4) and 5000m (13:06.10, Belgium all-time no. 3).  After successfully overcoming the injury in the off season, followed by limited racing in select spring cross events, Bashir made his ’16 season outdoor track debut at the Fanny Blankers-Koen Games in Hengelo on 22 May.  In a 5000m field that would go on to produce 9 of the event’s top-20 times this season, Abdi finished 10th with a time of 13:14.92, the third-fastest European time in ’16 behind Antonio Abadia, Spain (13:12.68) and Andrew Butchart, GB (13:13.30).  The Hengelo 5000m performance was Abdi’s 2nd fastest of his career, behind the ’15 mark cited above.

Other Personae-managed athletes with marks of note from the past week included from the IAAF Diamond League in Rabat: Paul Koech (3rd in 3000m SC, 8:12.33); Caroline Chepkurui (3rd in personal best 9:28.81); and Philip Milanov (4th in Discus, 63.74m); and from the IAAF World Challenge meeting in Beijing (18 May): John Kibet Koech (3rd in 3000m SC, 8:18.53). 


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