Could Paris 2024 Host the Ultimate Showdown Between East African Icons Bekele and Kipchoge?

BBC: The historic rivalry between two titans of athletics will reignite at Paris 2024 as Kenenisa Bekele secures a spot in Ethiopia’s marathon team.

At 41 years old, Bekele boasts a remarkable record as a three-time Olympic champion in the 5,000m and 10,000m events, although his last Olympic appearance dates back to London 2012, where he narrowly missed the podium in the longer distance.

Fresh from a second-place finish in the London Marathon, Bekele is slated to face off against the formidable Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya on August 10th.

Kipchoge, the former marathon world record holder at 39, seeks to etch his name in history as the first to clinch three consecutive Olympic marathon victories, following his triumphs in Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020.

Their rivalry traces back to their initial clash in a final at the 2003 World Championships in Paris, where Kipchoge seized gold in the 5,000m, with Bekele securing bronze.

Their paths crossed again at the 2004 Athens Olympics, where Bekele claimed silver in the 5,000m and gold in the 10,000m, while Kipchoge settled for bronze in the former.

In Beijing 2008, Bekele once more triumphed over Kipchoge, clinching gold in the 5,000m and defending his 10,000m title, cementing his dominance on the Olympic stage.

Since transitioning to marathons in 2013, Kipchoge has become a legend, amassing 11 major victories alongside his two Olympic golds.

Bekele’s marathon debut in Paris in 2014 showcased his potential with the sixth-fastest debut time, yet his career has been hindered by injuries.

Now, two decades since their inaugural battle in the City of Light, this Parisian showdown could mark the climax of Bekele and Kipchoge’s storied rivalry.

Editors Note: Source BBC

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