BEIJING (Reuters) - Britain’s Mo Farah survived a last-lap trip to retain his 10,000 meters world title in some style on Saturday, extending his dominance of men’s distance running at major championships.
Almost tripped up by Kenya’s Geoffrey Kamworor as he took the first bend after the bell, the 32-year-old regained his balance and his composure to storm down the final straight and finish in 27 minutes 01.13 seconds.
Farah, who has endured a difficult few months after his coach was the subject of doping allegations, raised his arms and roared in delight as he crossed the line.
Kamworor was outpaced over the final 100 meters but finished second in 27.01.76 to claim silver, while his compatriot Paul Tanui was third in 27.02.83.
A trio of Kenyans formed an imposing barrier at the front of the field for most of the race and the last-lap clash was only the worst of several points of contact with the Briton after he came through the pack to challenge them in the latter stages.
“So many times I nearly got tripped, nearly went down but thank God I did not go down,” Farah told the BBC in a trackside interview.
“There were three or four times that I nearly went down. I’ve got long strides so it’s easy to catch. But I don’t know if (they) deliberately tried to take me out either. I don’t know what to think about it.”
The reigning Olympic and world 5,000 and 10,000 meters champion has now won six straight distance titles at major championships going back to his second place in the longer event at the 2011 world championships in Daegu.
His season has been overshadowed by allegations in a BBC investigation linking his coach Alberto Salazar with doping. Salazar, also the coach of American Galen Rupp who finished fifth on Saturday, denies any wrongdoing.
Although there has never been any suggestion that Farah has been guilty of doping, the Briton said the disruption had taken its toll on his preparations for Beijing.
”It wasn’t easy to do after (the year) I’ve had,“ he said. ”I’ve just had to let my running do the talking and just keep winning medals. That’s what I‘m good at.
”It’s not easy running 27 minutes in this heat.
“The last lap, that was close. I honestly thought at one point I was gone because I stumbled.”
Farah will attempt to become the first man to do the 5,000-10,000 double at consecutive world championships at the Bird’s Nest Stadium next Saturday.
Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Pritha Sarkar