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Athletics-World record holder Kipketer announces retirement

Updated: 2006-09-20 12:34

PARIS, Aug 17 - Kenyan-born Dane Wilson Kipketer, the world 800 metres record holder and a three-times world champion, has announced his retirement.

The 34-year-old told the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) that he had made his decision after failing to win an elusive Olympic title last year in Athens, where he claimed bronze.

"I made my decision after Athens, but that was my private decision," Kipketer told the IAAF website.

"It was the point of my mental adjustment to the fact that I would not compete again, that it was the end of it. But this is the first time I have felt ready to put my private decision into words."

A silver medallist in Sydney in 2000, Kipketer, who moved to Denmark in 1990, was enabled by the IAAF to compete for Denmark from 1995 but Kenya barred him from entering the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta because of a row over his citizenship.

"I have had only one ambition since my silver medal in Sydney, which was to win that Olympic gold which is the only medal I was missing," he told the IAAF.

"That was my inspiration for the next four years which followed. However, now after the bronze in Athens it is clear and it is only being realistic to recognise that my goal is not going to be achieved. That my time is not going to come. That I am not fighting on until (the 2008 Olympics in) Beijing."

A world champion in 1995, 1997 and 1999, Kipketer set the 800 metres world record that still stands at one minute 41.11 seconds in August 1997 in Cologne.