Homiyu Tesfaye wins his 1500m heat at the 2014 IAAF World Indoor Championships in Sopot (© Getty Images)
The men’s 1500m heats threw up several surprises, with the main ones being 2011 world silver medallist Silas Kiplagat and world indoor bronze medallist Mekonnen Gebremedhin failing to qualify for tomorrow’s final.
With only two to go through automatically in each of the three heats, Kenya’s Kiplagat finished third in the second heat with 3:39.90, while Ethiopia’s Gebremedhin similarly misjudged his race and was edged out after finishing in the same position in an almost pedestrian and messy first heat, clocking only 3:47.22 in a race won by Germany’s Homiyu Tesfaye.
The mantle of fastest qualifier went to Gebremedhin’s compatriot Aman Wote, who claimed heat three with 3:36.75.
Also progressing with ease were the next three men behind him in the fastest of the three heats: Morocco’s defending champion and Olympic bronze medallist Abdalaati Iguider, USA’s Will Leer and Kenya’s Bethwell Birgen.
World indoor silver medallist Iham Tanui Ozbilen of Turkey did just enough to progress, courtesy of a 3:39.31 clocking in fifth place.
Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman won the second heat in 3:38.94, while New Zealand’s 2008 Olympic silver medallist Nick Willis followed him home in 3:39.14.
Nicola Bamford for the IAAF