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2012 Tokyo Marathon: Michael Kipyego Wins, Haile Gebrselassie Struggles

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Michael Kipyego (Kenya) won the 2012 Tokyo Marathon on Sunday, the sixth running of the race, finishing in a time of 2:07:37. Ethiopia's Atsede Habtamu (2:25:28) won on the women's side. It was Kipyego's first-ever marathon win (he normally specializes in the 3000m steeplechase).

Japan's Arata Fujiwara finished second (2:07:48), passing Uganda's Stephen Kiprotich near the end.

Haile Gebrselassie, who previously had set the marathon word record with a 2:03:59 in Berlin in 2008, finished a disappointing fourth in Tokyo, leaving his 2012 Olympic hopes in doubt. He was aiming for a sub-2:05 to help his chances of qualifying for Ethiopia's team, but instead crossed the finish line in 2:08:17. Despite it all, Gebrselassie, 38, a two-time Olympic gold medalist in the 10,000m, remains determined.

"I could run another marathon in two weeks," a defiant Gebrselassie told reporters. "I felt fantastic for the first 30 kilometers but then I had some problems at the end of the race.

"The last 5km was the worst I've ever run," added the Ethiopian.

For Gebrselassie, it continues he recent struggles in the marathon: He did not finish the 2010 New York City Marathon, nor the 2011 Berlin Marathon.

Following his win, Kipyego paid tribute to the legendary Gebrselassie.

"Today I won but you can never compare anyone with Haile," said the 28-year-old. "He's the king of the marathon. I salute him."