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Men's 800 metres heats complete

27 June 2002

The first round of the men's 800 metres took place at the City of Manchester Stadium under blue skies.

Japhet Kimutai

Japhet Kimutai will run in the 800m final

Botswana's Otukile Lekote (1:47.68) led home the automatic three qualifiers for the 800m final in a time that proved to be the fastest of the seeion ultimately. Paskar Owor (1:47.87) ran a season's best with fellow qualifier Nathan Brannen (1:48.04). Prince Mumba (1:48.40) of Zambia also qualfied as a fastest loser.

The second heat saw Joseph Mutua (1:48.53), Kris McCarthy (1:48.85) and Neil Speaight (1:49.67) qualify.

England's Speaight was considering his tactics for the final immediately after qualifying: “I’ve got to get on the trail of the leaders and hold on.”

Japhet Kimutai (1:49.62) led home the third heat. Zach Whitmarsh (1:49.92) and Dube Globy (1:50.16) will join him in the final.

Kenya's Kimutai commented afterwards: "For me to come here and win a medal is just so important.”

The final heat produced two fastest losers in Wales' Matthew Shone (1:49.67) and Fiji's Isireli Naikelekelevesi (1:50.01). The heat's automatic qualiers were Mbulaeni Mulaudzi (1:49.08), James McIroy (1:49.21) and Joel Kidger (1:49.67).

South Africans will be hoping for Mulaudzi strikes gold in the final and Mulaudzi, himself, is confident: “I was feeling so strong in the last 200m. I was just taking it easy. All I needed to do was to make sure I got through to the final.”

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