Giant on the move
Kenya’s hope for an Olympic marathon medal were dealt a blow when Robert Cheruiyot pulled out due to injury and three-times London marathon winner Martin Lel’s training was affected by flu. But Sammy Wanjiru saved the day and brought the marathon gold medal, proof that distance running is Africa’s forte.
Ethiopia, one of the poorest countries in the world, collected four gold, one silver and 2 bronze medals, showing that poverty does not have to stand in the way of great sportsmanship. Ethiopia’s Tirunesh Dibaba and Kenenisa Bekele both cruised to victory for the 10,000 and 5,000 metres, the first time the double has been achieved since the 1980 Games.
Kenya’s assistant athletics coach put it down to dealing with hardships from a young age and altitude, which helps the athletes deal with hot conditions.