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Suleiman Nyambui
Olympic Games 1980 - 5000 m race.jpg
Nyambui (#649; far left), Yifter (#191), and Maaaninka (#208) at the 1980 Summer Olympics
Personal information
Nationality Tanzanian
Born (1953-02-13) February 13, 1953 (age 63)
Majita Musoma, Tanzania
Sport Track
Event(s) 1500 metres, Mile, 2-mile, 5000 metres, 10,000 metres, Marathon
College team UTEP
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s) 1500 metres: 3:35.8[1]
Mile: 3:51.94[1]
Indoor 2-mile: 8:17.9[1]
5000 metres: 13:12.29[1]
10,000 metres: 27:51.73[1]
Marathon: 2:09:52[1]

Suleiman Nyambui (born February 13, 1953) is a former track athlete from Tanzania who specialized in various long-distance disciplines. Nyambui won the bronze medal at the 1978 All-Africa Games, the silver medal in 5000 metres at the 1980 Summer Olympics, and finished first at three consecutive marathons between 1987 and 1988. He holds multiple indoor national records of Tanzania in athletics.

Running career[edit]

Early life[edit]

Nyambui had dropped out of school after primary education. He became a fisherman in Ukerewe District in Mwanza region, where his potential as a good athlete was spotted by the Region's Athletic Organization. The organization helped in his training and afforded him facilities and guidance in making him a national and international athlete. He also had joined the Tanzania National Service before he went to train as a teacher. He taught school at Bukumbi (20 miles from Mwanza City) before moving to the United States to study for his bachelor's and master's degrees at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). Then he took a contract to train Saudi Arabian athletes. After that he moved back to Tanzania.


He attended UTEP from 1978 to 1982, where, as an older athlete (he was 29 when he graduated), he won four straight NCAA titles in the 10,000 meters — one of only five Division I men to ever accomplish such a feat. He also won three straight NCAA titles in the 5,000 meters while at UTEP and was the 1980 NCAA Cross Country champion. In a memorable Millrose Games race in New York in February 1981, Nyambui broke the world indoor 5,000 meter record with a 13:20.4, just ahead of Alberto Salazar who broke the American indoor 5,000 meter record.


Nyambui would go on to represent Tanzania in the men's 5000 metre race at the 1980 Summer Olympics, where he finished second behind only Miruts Yifter. After running shorter-distance races, Nyambui would go on to run several marathons, winning the Berlin Marathon on two occasions and the Stockholm Marathon in 1988.


  1. ^ a b c d e f All-Athletics. "Profile of Suleiman Nyambui". 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Kenya Henry Rono
Men's 5,000-m Best Year Performance
Succeeded by
Ethiopia Miruts Yifter

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suleiman_Nyambui — Please support Wikipedia.
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122 news items

Sun, 24 Jan 2016 21:26:15 -0800

Saddened by the sport's decline, the former national athletics coach, Suleiman Nyambui, was quoted as saying athletes have failed to attract potential invitations at the top world's events because of dismal performance in both local and international ...
Sat, 16 Jan 2016 23:07:30 -0800

We usually lack sportsmen of international repute - those who bring awards back home. In 1974, we had Filbert Bayi who managed to set the world records for 1500 metres. He brought home gold medals. Suleiman Nyambui also brought some medals home.
Daily News | The National Newspaper (press release) (blog)
Fri, 15 Jan 2016 22:34:26 -0800

Since Filbert Bayi won two gold medals in 1973 and 1974, athletics became the national sport and went on to produce other notable world class runners such as Suleiman Nyambui, Juma Ikangaa, John Yuda and Francis Naali. “We have made up our minds ...
Mon, 11 Jan 2016 07:00:00 -0800

Dar es Salaam — When you talk of legendary athletes in the country, you will probably come across names such as Filbert Bayi, Juma Ikangaa and Suleiman Nyambui. Many would forget to include John Steven Akhwari in this list. This is unfortunate because ...
Wed, 16 Dec 2015 04:36:03 -0800

Mtaka said Davis, who guided the country's athletics legends Filbert Bayi and Suleiman Nyambui to higher heights of success in the 1970s and 1980s, has all it takes to transform the national teams into formidable outifits. Davis, who now trains the ...
Daily News | The National Newspaper (press release) (blog)
Thu, 26 Nov 2015 20:41:15 -0800

The country gets the amount at the time when athletics have lost its former stronghold in Tanzania. To achieve the same and revive the golden days of legendary runners such as Filbert Bayi, Suleiman Nyambui and Juma Ikangaa, Tanzanians should change ...

U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association

U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association
Wed, 03 Jun 2015 11:11:33 -0700

That's the record (after converting to today's scoring system) held by the 1981 UTEP men's 10,000 meters foursome of champ Suleiman Nyambui, runner-up Mike Musyoki, third-place Matthews Motshwarateu and fifth-place Gidamis Shahanga. That was ...
Daily News | The National Newspaper (press release) (blog)
Wed, 13 Jan 2016 22:45:00 -0800

Among athletes to be honoured in the event are legendary runners such as Filbert Bayi, Suleiman Nyambui, Juma Ikangaa, Gidamis Shahanga, John Steven Akwari, Mwinga Mwanjala and others who excelled during the Mwalimu Nyerere era and others who ...

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