Former Somali refugee, Mohamed Farah, made Britain proud when he won gold in the 5,000 metres World Athletic Championships. Arch rival, Kenyan, Paul Lagat (representing USA) was the first to embrace him and congratulate him. Sportsmanship prevails also.
Farah arrived in England when he was just 8 years old and hardly spoke any English. His first love was football and his dream was to play for Arsenal. His PE teacher offered Farah the incentive of playing indoor football for 30 minutes before taking him to the running club. He worked hard and went on to get the European track record for 10,000 metres, the British road record for 10,000 metres, the British indoor record in the 3,000 metres, the British track record for 5,000 metres and the European indoor record for 5,000 metres.
In July 2010, Farah was the first British man to win the European 10,000 metres gold medal. He went on to also win gold in the 5,000m, becoming the first British man to win the long distance double.
Then last weekend, he turned silver into gold in the 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea after winning silver in the 10,000 metres, he went on to win gold in the 5,000 metres after a dramatic final lap.
Bernard Lagat was born in Kapsabet, Kenya and won medals for Kenya before changing his domicile and representing America. Despite the fierce rivalry between Farah and Lagat (Lagat pushed for gold the whole way), Lagat was the first man over to congratulate Farah. A beautiful moment from two world class sports men who have adopted to foreign countries.
Thanks to Ken Mc Cue (Sport Against Racism Ireland) for alerting me to the story.