Aisha Praught-Leer became the first Jamaican to win a major steeplechase gold medal on Wednesday’s 4th track and field day at the #GoldCoast Commonwealth Games in Australia.
Praught produced her stunner late, catching world U20 record holder Celliphine Chespol off the final hurdle of the women’s 3000m steeplechase to take a shock victory in 9:21.00.
Chespol finished second in 9:22.61 ahead of her teammate Purity Kirui, 9:25.74.
Jamaica picked up two medals in the women’s 400m.
Anastasia Le-Roy produced her best ever run, 50.57secs, a lifetime best, and though she didn’t catch leader and eventual winner Amantle Montsho, she expressed delight with her silver medal performace.
Stephenie McPherson, the 2014 champion, also tried but she too had to settle for one of the minor places, bronze in 50.93.
Montsho’s 50.15 handed her back the title she took eight years ago she won in Delhi, India.
Bahamian Jamal Wilson cleared 2.30m to take silver in the men’s high jump, won by Australian Brandon Starc, a personal best 2.32m.
Donald Thomas, also of Bahamas, ended 4th with 2.27m.
In the men’s long jump, Jamaicans Tajay Gayle, 8.12m, a personal best effort, and Damar Forbes, 7.89m, were 4th and 8th respectively. South African Luvo Manyonga won the event with a leap of 8.41m.
Warren Weir is the only Jamaican to make the men’s 200m final with 20.62. Weir’s Racers Clubmate Zharnel Hughes is the fastest qualifier with 20.37 and will be up against Trinidad and Tobago’s World silver medalist Jerome Richards, 20.41.
Kyle Greaux, also of Trinidad and Tobago, 20.66secs, will also be in the final.
Three Jamaicans in women’s 200m final
The women’s half lap is destined for a huge showdown between Olympic Games champions Elaine Thompson and Shaunae Miller-Uibo, along with Shericka Jackson.
Jackson ran a personal best of 22.28 to take semi-final 1 while Miller-Uibo got the better of Thompson 24.48 to 22.95 in semi-final 2.
Sashalee Forbes, second in semi-final 3 in 22.93, and Trinidad and Tobago’s Semoy Hackett, are also in the final.