Mo Farah has another gold medal to add to his collection, having become European champion over 10,000 metres just six weeks after collapsing in his bathroom and being airlifted to hospital.
It is fair to say things have gone awry since last year becoming only the second man in history to complete an Olympic and world ‘double-double’ in the distance events.
Farah has endured a wretched season until now, with a disappointing showing at the London Marathon compounded by an illness which forced him to miss the Commonwealth Games.
The 31-year-old only revealed the full extent of that illness upon arriving in Zurich on Monday, explaining how an infected tooth ended in him collapsing and being airlifted to hospital due to concerns over his heart.
Farah was quick to insist he was fit and ready for the European Championships, though, and showed on Wednesday evening that he was not only strong enough to just tackle the long-distance double, but possibly top the podium in both.
He held strong under pressure to win in 28 minutes 08.11 seconds, with British team-mate Andy Vernon – involved in a recent Twitter spat with Lynsey Sharp – producing a fine late surge to take silver.
“It meant a lot to me,” Farah, European champion over the distance in 2010, said.
“I was really ill a few weeks ago but training has gone well. Winning the European Championships again really does mean a lot to me.
“I didn’t want to let people down after missing the Commonwealth Games – it hasn’t been easy.
“I won the 5,000m and 10,000m double in Barcelona in 2010 and I won one title in Helsinki two years ago. Now I’m excited for the 5,000m and I hope to run well again.”
Farah got a celebratory hug from Jamaican star Usain Bolt and did a lap of honour in the drizzle with team-mate Vernon.
“This medal, it is a lot of work, months and years,” Vernon said after winning silver. “You got to get up on all those cold and rainy mornings for training. It takes a lot of motivation.
“When I woke up this morning I knew that I had a chance on medalling. In such a race everything has to be perfect in order to get a medal.
“On the home straight I tried on the inside, the gap closed and then I had to go round.”