Ayana so close
ROME (ITA, Jun 2): Some 35 000 spectators in nice and cloudy evening 4 world leads, 1 meet and 1 Diamond League record. Top highlight was Almaz Ayana superb 5000 m race, this time her closest to World record. Caster Semenay after slower pace than in Rabat still managed the same time. New Jamaican generation Thompson and Russell won their events.
The hero of the day was US Sprinter Ameer Webb who after winning the 200 m was second in 100 m with PB and his first legal sub 10. Men high jump continues in crisis.
Event by event
100m: Justin Gatlin maintained his unbeaten streak in 2016 but still no world-lead. Victory in 9.94 ahead of Ameer Webb 9.95 PB (after 200 win) and Jimmy Vicaut 9.99 on his season’s debut.
200m: In his first race of the day, Ameer Webb followed up his win in Doha with a win today in 20.04.
400m: World champion Wayde Van Niekerk opened his DL season with victory in 44.19 ahead of Grenada’s Bralon Taplin (44.43).
1500m: A fast time didn’t materialise but it was a Kenyan one-two courtesy of Elijah Manangoi (3:33.96) and Robert Biwott (3:34.21).
3000mSC: Conseslus Kipruto clocked a 8:01.41 world-lead after going off at WR pace. Jairus Birech fell on the last lap and was second in 8:11.39.
110m hurdles: Orlando Ortega won a largely European contest in 13.22 ahead of Pascal Martinot Lagarde (13.29) and Andy Pozzi (13.37).
Long jump: Greg Rutherford went out to 8.31m to maintain his unbeaten streak.
High jump: No winning homecoming for Gianmarco Tamberi who was third with 2.30m behind Bohdan Bondarenko (2.33m, tried WL 237) and Robbie Grabarz (2.30m). Barshim just sixth with 2.27m.
Discus: No big throws. Robert Urbanek produced an upset to win with 65.00m with Olympic champion Robert Harting third on his season’s debut in 63.96m. World champion Piotr Malachowski only sixth with 63.23.
100m: A strong last 40 metres from Elaine Thompson to win the 100m in 10.87 ahead of Eugene winner English Gardner (10.92).
800m: One of the hottest gold medal favourites in Rio? Caster Semenya equalled her 1:56.64 WL with a negative split to defeat world indoor champion Francine Niyonsaba (1:58.20) and Lynsey Sharp (1:59.03).
5000m: Almaz Ayana came so close to the world record of 14:11.15. Ayana was eight seconds up on Dibaba’s schedule through 3km in 8:30.43 but let the record slip on the last lap. Her winning time of 14:12.59 was the second fastest in history. Mercy Cherono was a distant second in a 14:33.95 PB.
400m hurdles: Janeive Russell made it back-to-back DL wins with a 53.96 world-lead. Georganne Moline stuttered badly into the first hurdle and finished eighth in 57.64.
Triple jump: The head-to-head between Caterine Ibarguen and Yolimar Rojas didn’t materialise with the latter not making the cut with 14.09m. Ibarguen won with 14.78m to claim her 34th win in a row.
Pole vault: Greek vaulters maintained their fine form by taking first and second through Ekaterini Stefanidi and Nikoleta Kiriakopoulou. Stefanidi won on countback with 4.75m.
Javelin: Sunette Viljoen was the best of the bunch with 61.95m ahead of Madara Palameika (61.92m). Only 3 over 60.
Shot: Valerie Adams continues to improve, claiming victory with a season’s best of 19.69m. She had five of the six best throws of the competition.