COLLIS BIRMINGHAM tackles the 3000 metres at the World Indoor Athletics Championships debut in Poland this morning.
The Ballarat Olympian contests the first of two 3000m heats in Sopot in what will be his world indoor titles debut.
Birmingham qualified for the championships when he ran in seven minutes, 41.02 seconds in Sotteville-les-Roun in France in July last year.
Running at the world indoors is an achievement in itself for the versatile Birmingham, who is a two-time Olympian as well as a multi World Track and Field Championships, World Cross Country Championships and Commonwealth Games competitor.
The 29-year-old is also the reigning Australian 10,000m champion.
Birmingham has a personal best of 7:35.45 over 3000m – a time he ran outdoors in Stockholm in August, 2012.
However, running indoors is a much different prospect.
Based on personal best times, Birmingham is ranked fourth in his heat.
Kenyan Augustine Kiprono Choge is ranked one with a PB of 7:28 ahead of Galen Rupp (7:30.16) from the United States.
The final will be run on Monday morning Australian time.
Birmingham had his last competitive run at the Perth Track Classic on February 22, when second to Kenya’s James Magut in the Herb Elliott Mile.
Birmingham is one of only three Australians at the three-day indoor titles, joining Olympic 110m hurdle champion Sally Pearson and long jumper Fabrice Lapierre.
Pearson is defending the 60m hurdles world indoor crown.
She tops this year’s world rankings with her latest runs of 7.79 and 7.80 seconds in Berlin.