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Sifan Hassan vs Letesenbet Gidey: Tokyo awaits the final showdown of the record making athletes

Sifan Hassan of The Netherlands and Letesenbet Gidey of Ethiopia broke the world record for 10,000 m in the space of two days.

Letesenbet Gidey and Sifan Hassan

Letesenbet Gidey and Sifan Hassan (Source: Netherlands News Live)


Eshaan Joshi

Updated: 11 July 2021 11:38 AM GMT

The dominance of one ace athlete in an era leaves the entire generation mesmerized over the unparalleled excellence of the sportsperson. However, the existence of two equally competent, confident, and charismatic contemporaries leaves the generation enchanted over their prowess, and eager for every encounter between them, irrespective of the platform and significance of the competition.

It is the latter in the case of Letesenbet Gidey of Ethiopia and Sifan Hassan of The Netherlands, who broke the world record for 10,000 m in the space of two days. The streak was started by Hassan, as she broke the existing record of Ethiopia's Alma Ayanaz (at the Rio Olympics) by more than 10 seconds clocking 29:06.82 on her home turf in Hengelo. However, just two days post this feat, Gidey smashed the record by more than 5 seconds, recording 29:01.03 in the Ethiopian Trials. The 23-year old has already expressed her wish to break her own record, and clocking a time of less than 29 minutes.

Sifan Hassan

While Gidey has two big records on her side, Hassan has experience, in addition to some startling feats. The 28-year old is the only athlete, male or female, to record a double of 1,500 m and 10,000 m gold at the World Championships, achieving the feat in 2019. She also holds the world records in the mile run and the 5 km road race.

Letesenbet Gidey

The 23-year old Gidey is relatively newer at the biggest stage, but enjoyed a sensational run at the junior level. She is a five time gold winner at the World Cross Country Championships, and also clinched silver medals at the 2019 World Championships at Doha, in the 10,000 m event and the 2020 Diamond League in the 5,000 m event. She also holds the world record in the 5,000 m category, with a timing of 14:06.62.

With the Tokyo Olympics 2020 being just round the corner, we already have the best possible build up for the Women's 10,000 m event, on the back of two world records in the space of two days. The showdown promises to be one for the ages, as Hassan and Gidey are all set to battle it out for the ultimate glory, a race which could be defining in the quest for excellence of the athletes.

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