The Mo the merrier as Farah plots 5,000m win

LONDON • Mo Farah believes his big-race experience will carry his battered and bloodied body to yet another world title in the 5,000m.

But the 34-year-old admits he will again be looking over his shoulder at the young Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei, who ran him so close in the 10,000m final at the World Championships in London.

Farah, who was set to run in the heats of the 5,000m early this morning (Singapore time) before Saturday's final, is still nursing the after-effects of a choppy 10,000m final. On Friday, he tripped twice, was spiked, and suffered a bruised knee.

However, he has taken a leaf out of his 2012 London Olympics playbook by recovering in a cryosauna, which uses nitrogen to lower the skin surface temperature.

He has also ensured that he does nothing more strenuous than play PlayStation games.

"Experience is everything," said Farah, who is looking to complete a fifth 5,000m-10,000m double, repeating his two Olympic and two world feats in the last five years.

"If you've been in a situation before and done it, then it's easier to deal with. That will help me massively."

On paper, his biggest challenge looks likely to come from the Ethiopian Muktar Edris and his 17-year-old compatriot Selemon Barega, who have run the two fastest times in the world this year.

Farah, though, believes that the 20-year-old Cheptegei, who has run the third-quickest 5,000m this season, is the man to beat again.

"Cheptegei is strong," he said. "He's the one coming through."

He added: "It's all the new ones that are a bit more scary to race because they are raw. They don't know what they are doing. They just go for it."

But he warned his rivals that, just as in the 10,000m final, he would not back down.

"A lot of times people say you are nice and try to take advantage," he admitted. "But you have to be ruthless on the track and off it sometimes."

THE GUARDIAN

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 10, 2017, with the headline 'The Mo the merrier as Farah plots 5,000m win'. Print Edition | Subscribe