Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba sets world record in women's 1500 meters

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MONACO (AP) — Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba powered down the home straight to set a world record in the women’s 1,500 meters at a Diamond League meeting in Monaco on Friday.

Dibaba collapsed to the ground in apparent disbelief after crossing the line in 3 minutes, 50.07 seconds — eclipsing the long-standing mark of 3:50.46 set by China’s Qu Yunxia in 1993.

Roared on by a cheering crowd on a warm night at Stade Louis II stadium, the 24-year-old Dibaba crushed her own personal best of 3:54.11 — the leading time this year which she set last week at a meet in Barcelona.

“I’m very happy the time is so fast, very happy for this record,” Dibaba said, moments after milking the applause from the crowd. “Finally all of this preparation is paying off.”

Despite being nearly four seconds slower last week in Barcelona, Dibaba felt sure she could get the record.

“With the training I did in Barcelona, I knew I was going to break it,” Dibaba said through a translator. “I’ve worked hard to get here; I would like to thank all the people who helped me.”

Dutchwoman Sifan Hassan was a distant second in 3:56.05 with American Shannon Rowbury third in 3:56.29.

Dibaba, a world indoor champion in 1,500 and in 3,000, will set her sights on her first major medal at the world championships next month in Beijing.

“Everyone is getting prepared for this, to win the gold medal. I am among them, I want to win the medal,” said Dibaba, who is the younger sister of Tirunesh Dibaba, a three-time Olympic champion who won five world titles, all in 5,000 and 10,000. “I want to do just like my sister, if not even better.”

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