Ethiopia Shines Bright in Boston, a view from Europe

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Baysa-BerhanuA-Boston16.JPGAtsede Baysa and Lemi Berhanu Hayle, photo by PhotoRun.net

Ethiopian day in Boston
BOSTON (USA, Apr 18): It was Ethiopia's day in the 120th Boston Marathon. They achieved a clean sweep for the first time in history in the men's race courtesy of Lemi Berhanu (2:12:45), reigning champion Lelisa Desisa (2:13:32) and Yemane Tsegay (2:14:02). Desisa made an aggressive move on the Newton Hills just after the halfway mark but Berhanu went with the surge before pulling away in the 25th mile. Kenyans filled the next four slots: Wesley Korir (2:14:05), Paul Lonyangata (2:15:45), Sammy Kitwara (2:16:43) and Stephen Chebogut (2:16:52) while Abdi Nageeye from the Netherlands was the top European finisher in eighth in 2:18:05. Notable DNFs included Kenya's Wilson Chebet and Ethiopia's Deribe Robi. There was an upset in the women's race with Atsede Baysa coming from behind to beat pre-race favourite Tirfi Tsegaye, 2:29:19 to 2:30:03. Baysa didn't go with the big break in the second half initiated by Kenya's Valentine Kipketer and was 26 seconds down on the leaders at the 30km mark but the former Chicago and Paris Marathon winner made up the ground in the last five miles to claim victory on her debut in Boston. Last 12.2km: Baysa 42:21, Tsegaye 43:31. Kenya's Joyce Chepkirui finished third in 2:30:50 while Latvian veteran Jelena Prokopcuka, who lost a shoe in the early stages according to the broadcasters, came through to finish fourth in 2:32:28. Reigning Olympic marathon champion Tiki Gelana had a disrupted preparation and faded back to 14th in 2:42:38 while defending champion Caroline Rotich from Kenya dropped out before the 10km with injury. Top American finishers were Zachary Hine (2:21:37) and Neely Spence Gracey (2:35:00) in tenth and ninth respectively. Both winners will get 150 000 USD each.

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