Athletics: Radcliffe pipped at post as Kiplagat powers home

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The Independent Online

A third successive victory eluded Paula Radcliffe here on Sunday night when the world marathon record holder was beaten in a close finish by Lornah Kiplagat, a Kenyan who now runs for the Netherlands.

Yet it was still a satisfying start to Olympic year for Radcliffe, whose victory last year in a world-record time of 30min 21sec won her a bonus of $100,000 (£54,000). On that occasion, Radcliffe was at a more advanced stage of training, her eye on defending her London Marathon title in mid-April.

On Sunday night she may have had to settle for the runners-up position, but given the weather, her time of 30:45, four seconds behind Kiplagat, was still a world-class performance.

Allyn Condon is set to replace Christian Malcolm in the Great Britain squad for this weekend's World Indoor Championships in Budapest. Condon was disqualified in last year's world indoors 200 metres but could be handed the chance to make amends after Malcolm injured his right hamstring in a race at Lievin on Sunday.

A final decision on whether Condon, who finished second at the French meeting behind the world record holder, Frankie Fredericks of Namibia, will be included is expected within the next 24 hours.