July 6, 2012 / 7:57 PM / 7 years ago

Olympics-Bekele says hopes of defending 5,000m title are over

PARIS, July 6 (Reuters) - Kenenisa Bekele conceded he would not defend his 5,000 metres Olympic title when he was only the fifth Ethiopian to cross the line in the Paris Diamond League meeting on Friday.

“My problem is I’m coming back from injury. I’m improving. I’ll run the 10,000 metres in London because I didn’t qualify for the 5,000,” said Bekele, who ran 12:55.79, far outside compatriot Dejen Gebremeskel’s winning time of 12:46.81.

“I havent’t been close to the top enough. I will not run the 5,000, but only the 10,000”, he told reporters.

Bekele, who has suffered calf problems over the past three years, had to finish among the top three Ethiopians but finished way down the field, crossing the line in ninth place overall. (Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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