Blessing Okagbare, Wenjun Xie and Justin Gatlin among winners at the second meeting of the Diamond League series
Blessing Okagbare and Yenew Alamirew were among those to set meeting records while there were world leading performances from the likes of Emma Coburn and Justin Gatlin at the second leg of the Diamond League series in Shanghai on Sunday.
Wenjun Xie delighted what was left of the home crowd in the final event of the day as he ran a 13.23 PB for 110m hurdles victory ahead of a field including the likes of world champion David Oliver and minor medallists Ryan Wilson and Sergey Shubenkov.
Being the last event of the evening, many fans had already left the stands and so missed Xie’s performance which saw him dip for the win as world indoor silver medallist Pascal Martinot-Lagarde of France ran 13.26 for second and Oliver clocked 13.28 for third.
Okagbare added 200m victory in a meeting record time to her long jump win from earlier on in the evening. With Jamaica’s triple world champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce a late withdrawal from the race, the Nigerian – who won world long jump silver and and 200m bronze in Moscow – powered over the line clocking 22.36 to beat the likes of Bahamian sprinter Anthonique Strachan with 22.50.
In the long jump, Okagbare secured victory with a 6.86m meeting record as Ivana Spanovic set a Serbian record of 6.85m in second. UK record holder Shara Proctor could only manage a best of 6.52m which followed two fouls for ninth.
Gatlin finished two tenths of a second clear of the rest of the field in clocking a world-leading 9.92 in the 100m as Jamaica’s world bronze medallist Nesta Carter clocked 10.12 and Gatlin’s compatriot Michael Rodgers ran 10.18. Britain’s Dwain Chambers ran 10.28 for seventh.
The women’s 1500m boasted a strong field but Abeba Aregawi was still a class apart, clocking a world-leading 3:58.72 having surged ahead with 300m to go. USA’s Jenny Simpson, silver medallist behind Aregawi at the World Championships in Moscow, again finished behind the Swede, clocking 4:00.42 as Sifan Hassan ran a 4:01.19 Dutch record for third.
There was a huge run from Coburn in the 3000m steeplechase, the American Olympic ninth-placer running her own race to clock a world-leading 9:19.80 PB. Pre race and it seemed the win would be fought out between Ethiopia’s Hiwot Ayalew and world medallists Sofia Assefa of Ethiopia and Milcah Chemos and Lidya Chepkurui of Kenya. But there was no response from them, nor the rest of the field, to the growing gap between the American and the chasers, Coburn holding on to her lead to finish six seconds clear. Assefa was second with 9:25.76 and Ayalew third with 9:27.25.
World and Olympic silver medallist Michael Tinsley of the US set a meeting record in the 400m hurdles to beat a field including the likes of Trinidad and Tobago’s world champ Jehue Gordon and 2008 Olympic bronze medallist Bershawn Jackson of the US. In the first event of the evening on the track, Tinsley clocked 48.77 ahead of world championships seventh placer Mamadou Kassé Hanne with 48.86 and Bershawn with 49.92.
In the women’s 400m Jamaica’s Novlene Williams-Mills won a battle with Botswana’s Amantle Montsho for the line, clocking 50.31 to pip the world silver medallist who ran 50.37. Olympic 200m champion Allyson Felix, competing for the first time this season following her hamstring injury at the World Championships last summer, clocked 50.81 for fifth over the one-lap event.
As expected, it was a kick that made the difference in the men’s 5000m and it belonged to Alamirew. The Ethiopian blasted ahead with 200m to go to clock a 13:04.84 meeting record as Kenya’s Olympic bronze medallist Thomas Longosiwa also made it home ahead of world silver medallist Hagos Gebrhiwet.
Earlier on in an evening of surprises and Kenya’s Robert Biwott had run a personal best of 1:44.69 to deny Algeria’s Olympic 1500m champion Taoufik Makhloufi in the 800m. Makhloufi appeared premature in his celebrations as 18-year-old Biwott surged past him to claim the win.
Egypt’s Abd Ihab El Rahman added almost six metres to his lifetime best in the first round of the javelin competition, his 89.21m a world lead, area record and meeting record which went on to be more than enough to win the competition. He beat a field containing all three world medallists – Vesely Vitezslav, Tero Pitkamaki and Dmitriy Tarabin – as Sweden’s Kim Amb was second with 84.14m.
A best of 5.92m for a world lead and meeting record saw France’s world indoor record-holder Renaud Lavillenie win the pole vault, with Greek world indoor champ Konstadinos Filippidis placing second on countback with 5.62m. Britain’s Steve Lewis was eighth with 5.52m.
Sandra Perkovic got the discus meeting record she had been eyeing, the world and Olympic champion’s world-leading 70.52m also an outright Diamond League record as well as a Croatian record to add one centimetre to the mark she managed in March which was the first 70.00m-plus throw for 15 years. There was another meeting record in the men’s shot put as Christian Cantwell threw 21.73m for victory.
A best of 17.10m was enough for world indoor champ Lyukman Adams of Russia to claim triple jump victory as Olympic champion Christian Taylor of the US was fourth with 16.65m and Britain’s Phillips Idowu, competing in a major competition for the first time since taking a break from the sport 10 months ago, was sixth with 16.47m. Croatia’s Ana Simic won the high jump with a world-leading 1.97m.
» Full results from the Diamond League meeting in Shanghai can be found here