Still just 23, she is already one of the greatest female runners of all time, famed for her remarkable sprint finish. In Beijing, she made sporting history by becoming the first woman to win the 5,000 metres and 10,000 metres double at the same Olympics. In the 10,000m, she ran the second fastest time ever - 29 mins 54.66 secs. Also in 2008, she set a new 5,000m metres world record, 14 mins 11.15 secs in Oslo in June.
Born in the same province as the legendary Haile Gebrselassie, in her career she has also won four gold medals in three World Athletics Championship – 5,000m in 2003, the 5,000m and 10,000m double in Helsinki in 2005 and the 10,000m in Osaka in 2007. She has also won five World Cross-Country Championships.