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IAAF Shanghai Diamond League Recap: Asbel Kiprop Pulls Off A Houdini Act, New Stars in the Men's Steeple and Women's 5,000?

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by LetsRun.com May 18, 2013The second stop of the 2013 IAAF Diamond League track and field circuit took place Saturday night in Shanghai (Saturday morning in the US) under wet conditions.Mid-d and distance wise there was some great action as Asbel Kiprop pulled off an mind-boggling/thrilling victory in the men’s 1,500, a new phenom emerged in the men’s steeple, and perhaps as well in the women’s 5000. Plus Francine Niyonsaba dominated the women’s 800.The biggest news from the meet was Kirani James opening with a 44.02 win.We recap the mid-d and distance action for you below in great detail before quickly taking a look at the other events. We’ve embedded in all Universal Sports race videos if they exist.Men’s 1,500: Asbel Kiprop Pulls A Houdini Act and Esacapes With An Absolutely Thrilling Victory“Are you kidding us?”That’s what we thought to ourrselves after the finish of this thriller.In the end, the Asbel Kiprop show continued as he picked up his second 1,500 victory over the world’s best in the span of eight days but boy did he make it interesting. On a wet evening in Shanghai, Kiprop took his customary spot up front near the two rabbits at the start, but 500 meters in, he let the rabbits go and allowed himself to be swallowed up by the pack.Kiprop almost appeared to be bagging it as at the bell he was way back in 9th place. Even with 300m to go, he was still in 9th. And then wait, coming off the final turn, Kiprop reappears in the picture in sixth to contend.What’s this?Yes, you got it, he spotted the field 1.5+ seconds seconds at bell – hell 1.5 seconds at 300 – and still got the job done as he just barely had enough time to catch Ethiopia’s Mekonnen Gebremedhin at the line as Kiprop won in 3:32.39 to Gebremedhin’s 3:32.43.Truly ridiculous. Look how far back Kiprop was at 300m:Leader to leader, the last lap was run in 55.41 but Kiprop was in about 53.3.2008 Olympic silver medalist Nick Willis was right behind Kiprop with 100 meters remaining in seventh and poised for a good finish as he’s known for having a good close and he seemed to be moving up. But when Willis moved outside to try to bring it home, he went down in a fall. Perhaps he clipped the runner in front of him? It’s hard to say for sure but Willis ended up 10th in 3:40.72. However, considering sixth place ended up running 3:33.85, it’s safe to say Willis was on his way to a 3:33 finish.The sixth place finisher was non other than 2011 world championship silver medalist Silas Kiplagat. Kiplagat, who was only 10th in Doha last week,  had talked a lot of trash coming into Shanghai about the great shape he was in, but he certainly didn’t show it in Shanghai and he had no excuses like last week when he nearly fell at the bell.Asbel Kiprop finds enough to win in Shanghai

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