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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 62)
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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71 news items

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 ...

El Paso Herald-Post (press release) (registration) (blog)

El Paso Herald-Post (press release) (registration) (blog)
Mon, 23 Nov 2015 15:39:42 -0800

Rotich garnered his fourth-straight All-America honor becoming only the third male runner in program history to accomplish such a feat (James Munyala and Suleiman Nyambui). The four-time national champion started off with a rigorous pace and ran with a ...
Daily News | The National Newspaper (press release) (blog)
Thu, 12 Nov 2015 13:45:00 -0800

He said athletics that produced world class runners such as Filbert Bayi, Suleiman Nyambui, Gidemas Shahanga and Puma Ikangaa, was initiated and emphasised by the then Tanzanian president, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere. “My appeal to the government is ...

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

U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association
Tue, 10 Mar 2015 13:32:11 -0700

This is the latest in a series of posts based on the USTFCCCA's newly unveiled NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships History page – the most comprehensive collection of the meet's history anywhere on the web – leading up to the 2015 ...


Sun, 29 Mar 2015 23:33:45 -0700

Athletics Tanzania secretary general, Suleiman Nyambui. Five Tanzanian athletes are expected to board return flight today from Beijing where they competed at this year's International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Cross Country ...

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 ...


Thu, 20 Aug 2015 15:52:30 -0700

Tanzania is yet to win any medal in Olympic Games since Suleiman Nyambui and Filbert Bayi won it for the first and last time in 1980 Moscow Games. It is proper to start planning in order to avoiding sending 'skeleton' teams to London. Thorough ...

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

U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association
Thu, 26 Mar 2015 06:41:15 -0700

Phhhhhewww. That was quite a collegiate indoor season, wasn't it? We here at the USTFCCCA take the two weeks or so following the NCAA indoor meets to 1) get ready for the outdoor season with compilations of preseason rankings and 2) wrap the indoor ...

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