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Keeping up with the Dibabas

Speaking exclusively to Ato Boldon for IAAF Inside Athletics, Ethiopia’s world record breaking middle distance hotshot Genzebe Dibaba, 23, talks about her incredible 2014, and looking up to big sis Tirunesh.

If your cousin Derartu Tulu is a two-time Oympic 10,000m champion; sister Ejagayehu an Olympic medallist; and other sister Tirunesh a three-time Olympic and five-time world champion – then you’ve already got genetics on your side.

What Ato Boldon wanted to know about Genzebe Dibaba, who broke three world indoor records within 15 days earlier this year, was if her career goals exceed even those of big sister and track legend Tirunesh?

“I don’t really expect to be greater than her. But I’d like to be as great as her,” says Genzebe. “That’s my hope. To be as good as her. I don’t really look for more.” 

And when Genzebe took more than three seconds off the world indoor 1500m record in Karlsruhe, it was no surprise to Tirunesh.

“The first thing that Tirunesh said to me when she called after the world record was: ‘based on the way you were training, I knew you were going to break it’.”

Above all, Genzebe is thoroughly enjoying following in her sister’s foostepts as a world-class international track athlete.

“As a kid I didn’t really imagine that I would see a lot of things or places,” she says.

“I have to say that I really love being in this because athletics allowed me to experience life in a truly wonderful way.”

Watch the full subtitled interview here: