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Abel Kirui

[Photo of Abel Kirui]

4 June 1982

2:05:04 (Rotterdam, 2009)


23Feb14 Tokyo Marathon 10th 2:09:04
12Aug12 Olympic Games Marathon 2nd 2:08:27
22Apr12 Virgin London Marathon 6th 2:07:56
04Sep11 IAAF World Championships, Daegu 1st 2:07:38
25Apr11 Virgin London Marathon DNF
07Nov10 ING New York City Marathon 9th 2:13:01
25Apr10 Virgin London Marathon 5th 2:08:04
22Aug09 IAAF World Championships, Berlin 1st 2:06:54
02Nov08 ING New York City Marathon DNF
28Sep08 real,- Berlin Marathon DNF
30Sep07 real,- Berlin Marathon 2nd 2:06:51
24Sep06 real,- Berlin Marathon 9th 2:17:47


05Apr09 Fortis Rotterdam Marathon 3rd 2:05:04
27Apr08 Vienna City Marathon 1st 2:07:38
29Apr07 Vienna City Marathon 3rd 2:10:41
03Dec06 Singapore Marathon 3rd 2:15:22


Abel Kirui might not have expected to stay anywhere close to Haile Gebrselassie who went after and set a new world record at the 2007 real,- Berlin Marathon, but Kirui had every reason to be proud of his effort there. Taking every advantage of ideal running conditions and the fast course, he smashed his previous personal best by almost four full minutes and finished in second place with a 2:06:51. Kirui was the sixth fastest man in the world for 2007.

The previous year at Berlin he finished in the top 10 with a time of 2:17:47. Ten weeks later, running under challenging heat and humidity in Singapore, he managed to take more than two minutes off that time.

Kirui then made an even bigger improvement in Vienna in April 2007 when he placed third in 2:10:41.

Kirui's first marathon in 2008 was as a pace-setter for Gebrselassie at Dubai in January where he did not complete the race. He did not finish the Tokyo International Marathon in February, but was a big winner when he returned to Vienna two months later and set a new course record.

He again joined Gebrselassie at Berlin in September and although passing 30km in 1:28:25, a couple of seconds ahead of the world-record holder, Kirui did not make it to the finish line.

Six months later at Rotterdam he reached the finish in spectacular fashion. Although somewhat overlooked behind the Kwalia-Kibet battle ahead, Kirui clocked a 2:05:04 to make him the sixth fastest man in history with the eighth fastest time.

Kirui was the fastest entrant in the 2009 World Championships in Berlin. He was among a group that passed halfway in 1:03:03. By 35 kilometers, it was down to Kirui and Kenyan teammate Emmanuel Mutai in 1:44:56, 2:20 ahead of the event record split from 2003. With 5 kilometers to go, Kirui moved ahead and stretched the lead, breaking the finish line tape in 2:06:54, a World Championships record by 97 seconds.

Running his first London Marathon in 2010, Kirui stayed with eventual winner Tsegaye Kebede until the final few miles, before falling back to fifth place.

After a ninth place at New York in 2010 and a non-finish in London in April 2011, Kirui struck gold again at the World Championships in Daegu. Burning a 14:18 split at 30km - the fastest 5km split in World Championships history - he went to win by record margin of 2:38 with the second fastest WC time of 2:07:32.

Kirui added another championship medal to his collection when he earned the silver at the 2012 London Olympics. His time of 2:08:27 was the fourth fastest ever in Olympic competition.