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Berlin hero Kimetto to go distance

Athletics: Having become the first man in history to break 2:03 for the marathon in Berlin on Sunday, Dennis Kimetto had some bad news for his rivals.

"Actually, I think I could still be a very good runner ten years from now, at 40," said Kimetto, a quiet smile indicating this was no joke.

The Kenyan, who first burst on to the international scene in 2011, admits his steely determination is fired by both the memory of seeing the great duels of Paul Tergat versus Haile Gebrselassie on television and of a childhood where money was scarce.

"We didn't have television or radio at home, so at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney I went to the community centre in the village and watched. The memory of Haile (Gebrselassie) versus (Paul) Tergat in the 10,000m inspired me. I thought, perhaps I could run at that level," he added.

"My father said, train as well as you can and go for it, you can change your life."

Serena roars back

Tennis: Serena Williams narrowly avoided a bagel against Spanish qualifier Silvia Soler-Espinosa, then won 13 of the next 15 games to pull out a 7-5, 6-2 victory in the first round of the China Open.

Williams looked lethargic and flat-footed at the start, pushing the ball back without much pace or direction and occasionally shanking groundstrokes several feet out. After only 15 minutes, she had already dropped serve three times and fallen behind 5-0.

Just as quickly as she gave up such a big lead, however, Williams turned it around. In the next game, the 18-time major winner saved a set point and broke Soler-Espinosa to finally get on the board.

"I didn't want to lose 6-love," Williams said. "I just started fighting. I was like, just let me at least try to break here."

Max in dreamland

Motor Sport: Toro Rosso prodigy Max Verstappen will become the youngest ever Formula One driver to participate at a grand prix weekend when he gets behind the wheel in Friday's first practice in Japan.

"It is good preparation for next year, even if it's not something I could have imagined a few months ago," said Verstappen, who turns 17 today. "To already be participating in a practice session is, of course, a dream come true."