ir Mo Farah suffered a shock defeat on his return to competitive action on Monday.
The four-time Olympic champion lined up in the Vitality London 10,000, his first outing for 11 months since suffering a foot injury as he failed to seal a spot at the delayed Tokyo Games last summer.
However, Farah could only finish in a disappointing second place as Ellis Cross sprung a major surprise on the streets of the capital.
A club runner from Aldershot, Cross was not part of the elite field at the race and had to pay his own £37 entry fee. He ended up winning in a time of 28 minutes and 40 seconds, four seconds clear of illustrious rival Farah.
Quizzed on his Olympic future after that upset, Farah said: “Your body has to be ready. You have to be in the right frame of mind. You have to be able to compete with the guys.
“Today was a tough day. Ellis did really well to win here. But you’ve got to see where you are. At the minute I don’t even know. You’ve got to take it race by race and let the body see what it can do. I’m not getting any younger, am I?
“I did put some good blocks of training together but it’s been so, so long – nine months since my last race. I love the sport and I love what I do. I’ve had a long career but there’s a lot of youngsters who are coming through, which is nice to see.”
The triumphant Cross, meanwhile, was left in disbelief after besting the six-time world champion and Britain’s most decorated track and field Olympian of all time.
“I didn’t believe it until 20 metres from the finish, I was like, ‘He’s just going to outkick me, that’s just that’. I can’t explain the feeling. It’s overwhelming,” he said.
“The most inspiring thing for myself is I’ve beaten somebody that’s an idol. He’s known around the world and I’ve just beaten him over his prime distance. I didn’t quite follow the script today but, to pull it off, I’m delighted.”
The women’s race was won by two-time European medalist Eilish McColgan, who got within two seconds of Paula Radcliffe’s British record in a time of 30 minutes and 23 seconds.
McColgan also set a new 5km record in Malaga last week.
“I’m really, really happy with today,” she said. “Obviously I’m disappointed to just miss it but it is what it is and hopefully I’ll have another couple of opportunities this year.”