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  • The women's 5000 metres at the 2008 Summer Olympics took place on 19–22 August at the Beijing National Stadium. The qualifying standards were 15:09.00 and 15:24.00. While strategically this was different, the results were much the same as the 10000 final a week earlier. Elvan Abeylegesse kept took the lead earlier but field did not dissipate behind her, instead Ethiopians, Kenyans and newly crowned steeplechase world record holder Gulnara Samitova-Galkina engulfing each attempt to pull away. Going into the last lap, it was the three Ethiopians and former Ethiopian Abeylegesse at the front, with the Kenyan team and Russian Liliya Shobukhova already trying to catch back up. Tirunesh Dibaba jumped into the lead with the expected chase coming from Meseret Defar, in one of the few head to head battles between these two stars. But Abeylegesse hadn't read the script and refused to get out of the picture. Through the final turn she caught Defar and swung wide into lane 2 as if to speed past Dibaba. She was able to match Dibaba's speed down the final straight but couldn't make up the ground she had lost, Dibaba taking her second gold, Defar holding off the rest of the field to take bronze.

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