Meselech Melkamu en route to her 29:53.80 performance in Utrecht (AFP / Getty Images) © Copyright
General News Utrecht, Netherlands

Melkamu stuns with 29:53.80 run in Utrecht

Ethiopian Meselech Melkamu, 24, became only the fourth woman in history to break the 30-minute barrier for 10,000m, clocking 29:53.80 in Utrecht, Netherlands, on Sunday (14).

Her mark was the second fastest of all-time and broke Tirunesh Dibaba's African record of 29:54.66 achieved at the Beijing Olympics last August.

Melkamu, who's collected four World Championships bronze medals - three in cross-country and one indoors at 3000m in Valencia in 2008 - had a previous personal best of 31:04.93 from Ostrava in 2008, where she finished third.

The women's 10,000m world record remains 29:31.78 by China's Wang Junxia set in Beijing in 1993.

Kenya's Florence Kiplagat finished second in the race in 30:11.53 to become the ninth fastest in history. Her mark is a new Kenyan record for the distance, displacing Linet Masai who ran 30:26.50 at last August's Olympic Games.

Wude Ayelew of Ethiopia finished third in 30:11.87 to become the tenth fastest of all time.

David Monti and Bob Ramsak for the IAAF

Leading results

1 Meselech Melkamu (ETH) 29:53.80
2 Florence Jebet Kiplagat (KEN) 30:11.53
3 Wude Ayalew (ETH) 30:11.87
4 Sylvia Jebiwott Kibet (KEN) 30:47.20
5 Aberu Kebede (ETH) 30:48.26
6 Hilda Kibet (NED) 30:51.92