Born in Somalia but raised from the age of 12 in Belgium, Bashir was inspired to take up running after watching Mo Farah compete at the 2008 European Cross Country Championships in Brussels.

It proved a wise decision as within two years he was representing his country at the European Cross Country Championships. A quality athlete on all surfaces, in 2012 he placed fourth in the 10,000m at the European Championships before the following year finishing 23rd over the 25-lap distance at the Moscow World Championships.

In 2014 he claimed PB’s in the 5000m (13:20) and 10,000m (27:36) before injury issues marred his progress in 2015 and 2016. Bashir competed at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games but short of his best, placed 20th in the 10,000m and failed to progress from his heat of the 5000m.

Failing to advance from his 5000m heat at the 2017 World Championships also proved frustrating but since joining the NN Running Team earlier this year, the Belgian has enjoyed a welcome upturn in results.

Coached by Northern Irishman Gary Lough – the man who also guides four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah – he placed eighth on his marathon debut in Rotterdam, recording 2:10:46 in April. He then enjoyed a major breakthrough on the track winning 10,000m silver at the European Championships in Berlin before destroying his previous 5000m PB to record 13:04.91 in Brussels.

With plans now to focus on the road, a half-marathon PB of 60:42 for third in the 2018 Great North Run bodes well for the future. 

Did You Know? 

Bashir started his sporting life in Belgium as a footballer. He featured as a promising right-winger before later transferring to running.