Catch up on some of the latest athletics news from around the world with our global update

Rudisha is ready

World and Olympic 800m champion David Rudisha will be aiming for his fifth victory over 800m at the IAAF Melbourne World Challenge on Saturday.

Rudisha, whose fastest time in Melbourne stands at 1:43.10, will face Australian record-holder Alex Rowe and Joshua Ralph, who has already clocked 1:46.35 for the distance this year.

Other leading international names in action include Jamaica’s Christine Day and Kaliese Spencer in the 400m and Kenya’s James Magut in the 1500m. Also watch for some good clashes on the in-field: Dani Samuels vs Britain’s in-form Jade Lally in the discus, Kathryn Mitchell vs Kelsey-Lee Roberts in the javelin and Damien Birkinhead vs Tom Walsh in the shot put.

Other big domestic names in action include in-form Alana Boyd in the pole vault, Ryan Gregson and Collis Birmingham in the 1500m and Ben St. Lawrence in the 5000m.

The Melbourne meet is the first in the 2016 IAAF World Challenge series.

Innovations at World Indoors

With two weeks to go until the IAAF World Indoor Championships, the IAAF and local organisers have promised a global athletics competition like no other with several new innovations.

One of the biggest changes will be in the shot put, long jump and triple jump. After five rounds, just the top four athletes will have a sixth attempt. With the battle for medals intensified, the competition schedule will allow time so that those final-round attempts will be the sole focus of the whole arena at that time.

Athletes in all semi-finals and finals will be introduced on to the field of play one by one, in much the same way that teams are presented at the IAAF World Relays. Winners of each event will be awarded flowers at the end of their competition before going on a lap of honour.

The medal ceremonies will then take place each evening at Pioneers Courthouse Square in the heart of Portland in a big track and field party with music, food and a live stream of the action, the medallists will be welcomed by a huge crowd every evening.

Schippers set for Portland

World 200m champion Dafne Schippers and European indoor and outdoor 1500m champion Sifan Hassan are among the seven athletes on the Dutch team for the World Indoor Championships.

Other team members include Churandy Martina (60m), Liemarvin Bonevacia (400m), Jamile Samuel (60m), Lisanne de Witte (400m) and Maureen Koster (3000m).

Nadine Broersen was intending to defend her world indoor pentathlon title but has been ruled out due to injury.

Defar among entries for Carslbad 5km

Two-time Olympic 5000m champion Meseret Defar is scheduled to compete in the Carslbad 5km on April 3 in California.

Before that she plans to run the 3000m at the World Indoors.

Tola the fastest at Lake Biwa Marathon

The 2013 world marathon bronze medallist Tadese Tola from Ethiopia is the fastest invited elite runner for the Lake Biwa Marathon on Sunday.

Tola ran his PB of 2:04:49 in the Dubai Marathon in 2013 and more recently the 28-year-old was fifth in Xiamen and ninth in Boston last year.

The line-up also includes two runners who placed highly at the World Championships – bronze medallist Solomon Mutai from Uganda and world fifth-placer Shumi Dechase from Bahrain. Polish record-holder Henryk Szost is the best of the invited non-African born athletes on show.

The race is the last designated selection race for the Japanese runners vying for a place on the men’s team for Rio 2016: Olympic sixth-placer Kentaro Nakamoto (2:08:35 PB), fellow 2012 Olympian Ryo Yamamoto (2:08:44), Kazuhiro Maeda (2:08:00) and veteran Masakazu Fujiwara (2:08:12) will be in contention for a place on the team.

Four Kenyans with sub-one hour PBs for CPC Loop Den Haag Half Marathon

Four Kenyans with sub-one hour lifetime bests will compete in the CPC Loop Den Haag Half Marathon on Sunday: Abraham Cheroben (58:48), Stephen Kibet (58:54), Alex Korio (59:28) and Edwin Kipyego (59:30).

Some good Europeans will also be in action, including Koen Raymaekers (62:09), Abdi Ulad Hakin (62:24), Sondre Nordstad Moen (62:32) and Abdi Nageeye (62:40). The course record is held by the late Sammy Wanjiru at 58:33 from 2007.

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