London: Ethiopian world marathon record holder Haile Gebrselassie announced his retirement on Sunday after dropping out of his first New York City marathon.
"I am retiring," the twice Olympic 10,000 metres champion told a news conference. "It`s time to step away and give chances to the youngsters."
Gebrselassie, 37, who set 27 world records in his illustrious career, pulled out after the halfway stage. A medical examination on Saturday had revealed fluid and tendinitis in his right knee.
"I never thought about retirement," he said. "But for the first time, this is the day. Let me stop and do other work after this.”
"Let me do another job. Let me give a chance to the youngsters. I did very hard work to win this race, it didn`t work."
After retiring from the track, Gebrselassie clocked two hours four minutes 26 seconds to break Kenyan Paul Tergat`s world marathon at the 2007 Berlin race.
In the following year he became the first man to run under two hours four seconds when he clocked 2:03:59 in Berlin.