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Page last updated at 14:46 GMT, Friday, 4 April 2008 15:46 UK

O'Sullivan rules out Beijing bid

Sonia O'Sullivan
O'Sullivan claimed an Olympic 5000m silver medal in 2000

Sonia O'Sullivan has denied that she is planning to run in this summer's Olympic marathon, despite competing over the distance later this month.

The 38-year-old has entered the Boston Marathon on 21 April but she insists that her competitive days are over.

"I am definitely finished with starting on elite women start lines," she said.

O'Sullivan will run among the pack at Sunday's Great Ireland Run in Dublin when the women's field will include Joe Pavey and Kenya's Doris Changeywo.

"I am not planning to chase an Olympic qualifying mark (in Boston)," added O'Sullivan.

"I really don't know what I can run. I did run two hours 42minutes in New York in 2006 with little preparation.

606: DEBATE

"My goal is to run under three hours and I have Paddy Power the Irish bookmaker backing me, who will pay 1,000 euros for every minute under three hours, to be donated to Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind."

O'Sullivan is aiming for a time of "around 35 minutes" in Dublin's Phoenix Park on Sunday.

At the head of the women's field, Hungary's Aniko Kalovics could challenge Pavey and Doris Changeywo while Australia's Benita Johnson and last year's Dublin winner Victoria Mitchell are also likely to be in contention.

Kenyan Abraham Chebii will aim to repeat his men's win over last year although his former compatriot Abdullah Ahmad Hassan - now representing Qatar - and European cross country champion Sergiy Lebid could also challenge.

Eritrean Yared Asmeron, fourth in last summer's World Championship marathon, and Martin Dent from Australia will also be contenders.



see also
O'Sullivan to coach Australians
12 Mar 08 |  Athletics
O'Sullivan 11th in Dublin event
16 Apr 07 |  Athletics
O'Sullivan ready for 'last lap'
14 Feb 07 |  Athletics
Sonia's emotional farewell
24 Aug 04 |  Athletics


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