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IAAF org: Johnson defeats Masai in Amorebieta

Showdown between the reigning long race World Cross Country champion Johnson and Masai


Sunday 9 January 2005 Amorebieta, Spain – Australia’s Benita Johnson came out on top in the clash of Reigning World Cross Country champions by beating Kenya’s Edith Masai in the 51th Cross Internacional Zornotza - EAA meeting - held today on a sunny and nice morning. Today’s was Johnson’s first ever European appearance on a cross country permit.

Reigning long race World Cross Country champion Johnson
The showdown between the reigning long race World Cross Country champion Johnson and Masai, the short race World champion, didn’t let the crowd down as they came 1-2 and proved to be the strongest specialists on this surface. 6th in 2001, 4th in 2002 and 5th in 2003 in the 4km event, Johnson moved up to the long race in Brussels last year to snatch the World title.

Hayley Yelling who made most of the early run
Right from the start it was Britain’s European champion Hayley Yelling who made most of the early run closely followed by the rest of the favourites: her compatriot Kathy Butler, Johnson and the Kenyan trio of Masai, Alice Timbilil, Fridah Domongole.

Johnson takes lead at halfway mark
Yelling took charge of the race until halfway when Johnson and Masai went to the fore to rule the pace; shortly afterwards only Timbilil was able to stay in contention as the British duo started to fade.

Masai and Johnson took turns in the lead during the last lap and left ...

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