ALCOBENDAS, SPAIN– Eritrea’s Kidane Tadese produced a major surprise at the 30th ‘Cross Internacional de la Constitución’ on Sunday (4) on the outskirts of Madrid.
Competing in sunny but chilly (9º C) conditions, the 24-year-old emerging star took the better of Kenya’s 2010 World Cross Country champion Joseph Ebuya to clinch a three-second victory from the defending champion Kenyan.
Men’s race – Ebuya leads throughout but Kidane proves to be stronger.
After his commanding victory last year Ebuya came back to Alcobendas full of confidence following a massive 25-second win from Ethiopia’s reigning World Cross Country champion Imane Merga at the L’acier race in Leffrinckroucke (France) last Sunday (27 Nov.) Meanwhile, Tadese also showed fine form on the Spanish soil of Llodio when he finished runner-up to Leonard Komon on the same day.
The 10,000m contest opened with Ebuya’s early lead while his fellow Kenyan Hosea Macharinyang, Uganda’s Simon Ayeko and Tadese completed the main group.
Some 3000 metres into the race Ayeko began to lose ground and the final podium became clear, with Ebuya always making the pacing duties. By halfway, Macharinyang started to fade and the race turned to the expected two-horse fight between the in-form Ebuya and Tadese.
At the bell (2500 metres remaining) the leading tandem had built a five-second gap on Macharinyang and the sizable crowd assembled already dreamt of a thrilling final sprint but Tadese had very different thoughts and he unleashed a powerful change of rhythm with 1100 to go which Ebuya was unable to cover.
For the last kilometre Tadese managed to keep Ebuya at bay and romped home in 30:10 for the Kenyan’s 30:13 while Macharinyang secured the third spot on the podium 23 seconds behind the victor.
Ebuya’s pace throughout the race was so terrific that the fourth placed Kenya’s Kiprono Menjo crossed the finish line over one minute adrift.
“It’s the first time I managed to beat Ebuya, who is a World Cross Country champion; it makes me to be very satisfied with my performance,” an ecstatic Tadese, who is based part of the year in Madrid, said. “I’ll return to Eritrea in a couple of weeks to train in high altitude there alongside my mate Teklemariam Medhin; he remains in Eritrea because he has not been given the visa to travel abroad yet. I’ll come back to Spain in February and my main goal for the summer will be the London Olympics in the 5000m and 10,000m events. I would like to break the 27 minute barrier in the longer distance.”
MEN (10,100m) –
1. Kidane Tadese (Eritrea) 30:10
2. Joseph Ebuya (Kenya) 30:13
3. Hosea Macharinyang (Kenya) 30:33
4. Kiprono Menjo (Kenya) 31:20
5. Workneh Fikre (Eritrea) 31:26
6. Mohamed Marhum (Spain) 31:30
7. Miguel Ángel Barzola (Argentina) 31:31
8. Iván Fernández (Spain) 31:36
9. James Moiben (Kenya) 31:41
10. Antonio Jiménez (Spain) 31:49