Emanuel reaches World Championships final

Lee Emanuel is through to the men's 3,000m final at the IAAF World Indoor Championships
Lee Emanuel is through to the men's 3,000m final at the IAAF World Indoor Championships
  • Lee Emanuel reaches 3,000m final at World Indoor Championships
  • St Leonards athlete comes fourth in high class heat last night
  • Emanuel finishes ahead of reigning champion
  • 31-year-old will line up in 12-man final on Sunday night
  • Emanuel making second appearance in global event

Athletics ace Lee Emanuel is through to the men’s 3,000m final at the IAAF World Indoor Championships.

The middle distance runner from St Leonards produced a terrific performance to finish fourth in his heat in Portland, United States, last night (Friday).

Emanuel clocked a season’s best time of 7:53.18 to claim the last automatic qualification place for the final in his heat, although the three runners immediately behind him also went through as fastest losers.

The 31-year-old finished strongly to gain two places in the last 200m, crossing the line just ahead of reigning champion and last year’s 5,000m silver medallist at the outdoor World Championships, Caleb Ndiku (Kenya).

In a heat packed with quality, Emanuel was only beaten by world and Olympic 1,500m bronze medallist Abdalaati Iguider (Morocco), 2013 world 5,000m bronze medallist Isiah Kiplangat Koech (Kenya) and Paul Kipkemoi Chelimo (United States).

The 12-man final - which will feature athletes from Ethiopia, Morocco, Kenya, Djibouti, United States, Australia and Canada - will take place at around 8.10pm GMT tomorrow.

Emanuel, who spends the bulk of his time training in the United States, beat British 5,000m outdoor champion Tom Farrell to retain his Indoor British Championships title last month.

This is Emanuel’s second appearance at the IAAF World Indoor Championships having made his Great Britain debut in the 1,500m two years ago in Poland. He then won a 3,000m silver medal at the European Indoor Championships last year.

Emanuel also achieved the World Indoor Championships entry standard in the 1,500m in finishing fourth at last month’s Glasgow Indoor Grand Prix, but plumped for the longer distance at the British Championships.

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