Mo Farah targets London swansong after completing "double double" mission at Rio Olympics

Frank Dalleres
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Athletics - Olympics: Day 15
Farah is only the second man to defend both the 5,000m and 10,000m Olympic titles (Source: Getty)

Britain's Mo Farah has set his sights on a track swansong at the London 2017 World Championships after completing his quest for a “double double” at the Rio Olympics.

Farah successfully defended his 5,000m title on Saturday night, as he had the 10,000m crown a week earlier, to restate his credentials as Britain’s greatest ever distance runner.

He is only the second man to win both titles at two separate Olympic Games, after Finland’s Lasse Viren in 1976, and his triumph ensured Team GB would at least match their London 2012 haul of 65 medals.

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Having won a combined tally of nine Olympic and World Championship golds – more than any other distance runner – Farah is expected to quit the track and turn his focus to the marathon.

Before that, however, the 33-year-old intends to sign off by competing over at least one of his favoured distances next summer at the London Stadium, the scene of his first Olympic double.

“I’m not so good at the marathon, to be honest, that was hard for me. It’s a different pain and a different challenge,” said Farah, who was eighth on his London Marathon debut in 2014.

“In 2017 I’d like to be able to go onto the track in London but after that I’ll go onto the road for a couple of marathons. I owe it to the people in London to race at home, but I don’t know which event.”

There was no repeat of the trips and stumbles that jeopardised his 10,000m final and 5,000m heat, but Farah was made to work to complete the second leg of his Rio medal mission.

American Paul Chelimo and Ethiopian Hagos Gebrhiwet both challenged Farah in the closing stages, but the Briton kept them at bay and both would later be disqualified for jostling.

“Mentally I had to be on top of my game. The guys were out there to get me, so I just had to be alert. You saw me sat at the back, but it wasn’t an easy last five lap burnout. The guys pushed on and on,” he added.

“At the beginning I felt a bit tired but I got going again. I know the guys were thinking about me, so I controlled the race. I wasn’t going to let anyone past me. Then at the end I used my speed.

“You’ve got to do your homework; that’s what I’ve done over the years. I haven’t won just medals, I’ve come sixth and seventh. To come back year after year to win is pretty amazing.”

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