The cream of African running talent will be on display at the World Cross-Country Championships on Sunday, with a battle royale between Ethiopia and Kenya likely in both men and women\'s events.
A welcome returnee to the women\'s 8km race will be Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba, the reigning double Olympic middle-distance champion bidding for a fourth world cross-country title.
But Dibaba\'s injured male team-mate Kenenisa Bekele, a multi-medal winner who has also shone on the track, will not be competing through injury.
Dibaba missed last year\'s edition in Jordan through injury but won the crown in Edinburgh in 2008 to add to victories in 2005 and 2006, and a silver in 2007.
Last year in Amman, Kenya dominated the women\'s race in Dibaba\'s absence, Florence Kiplagat claiming gold around the wind-swept course at Bisharat Golf Club.
Kiplagat is not in the Kenyan team this time around, and it will be 20-year-old reigning silver medallist Linet Masai, third in 2008 behind Dibaba and Mestawet Tufa, leading the east African country\'s charge.