All three Ethiopian representatives on Thursday booked their place in the men’s 5000m final at the World Athletics Championships.
The successful first-round qualifying bid, however, was marred by a controversy over officials of the Ethiopian delegation’s decision to drop Telahun Bekele from the starting lineup a day before the competition.
Men’s 5000m heat was the first event at the National Athletics Centre for the evening’s session on day four of the World Athletics championship.
From heat two, Yomif Kejelcha and Berihu Aregawi of Ethiopia punched their ticket to the final after finishing second (13:32.83) and fourth (13:33.23), respectively.
Guatemala’s Luis Grijalva won the heat in 13:32.72 to advance to the final, as did four East African athletes – Djibouti’s Mohamed Ismail, Uganda’s Oscar Chelimo, Kenya’s Jackob Kirop and Ishmael Rokitto Kipkurui.
Ethiopia’s Hagos Gebrhiwet also finished second in 13:35.90 from the first heat, won by Spain’s 1500m world champion silver medallist Mohamed Katir (13:35.90).
Norway’s Olympic 1500m champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen, who earned a second world silver Wednesday, claimed third (13:36.21) to make it through, as did his teammate Narve Gilje Nordas.
But Kenya’s Nicholas Kipkorir, Bahrain’s Birhanu Balew and Stewart McSweyn (who fell) all missed out. Meanwhile, Olympic 5000m champion Joshua Cheptegei was a non-starter.
The men’s 5000m final will be held at 20:05 local time on the final day of the World Athletics championship Budapest 23.