06 MAR 1999 General News 6 March

Men 1500m heats roundup

Men’s 1500m summary

The day after winning the 3000m, Haile Gebrselassie qualified automatically for the final of the 1500m with a heat victory in 3: 41.21. The Ethiopian, who actually false started, was given a hard time by Portugal’s Rui Silva, who shadowed him throughout the last half of the race and almost tripped him up as they both lapped Sampa Dendup of Bhutan. Kenya’s Laban Rotich tried to catch the two front runners in the last 150 metres but to no avail – clocking 3:41.32 behind Silva’s 3:41.22. With three to qualify automatically, Britain’s Eddie King – who has a curious backward leaning running style – clinched one of the fastest losing qualifier spots with 3:41.92. Another to do that was European record holder Andres Diaz – who could only finish fourth in the first heat. That race was won by Hakim Ali of Tunisia with a late sprint that took him past Diaz and early pace setter William Tanui. The Kenyan, who is the defending champion in this event, also succumbed to a surge from Morroco’s Adil El Kaouch but held on for third.