Mon, Mar 05, 2018 - Page 10 News List

Coleman, Dibaba steal show at Worlds

DRAMATIC DAY:Shot putter Tom Walsh from New Zealand shattered the World Indoor Championships’ longest-standing record of 31 years with a 22.31m throw

Reuters, BIRMINGHAM, England

Christian Coleman, center, wins the men’s 60m final ahead of runner-up Su Bingtian, right, and third-place finisher Ronnie Baker, third left, on Saturday at the World Indoor Championships in Birmingham, England.

Photo: Reuters

Christian Coleman looked the natural successor to Usain Bolt as the fastest man in athletics, sweeping in a blur to a majestic 60m victory on Saturday at the World Indoor Championships.

A night of remarkable drama at Arena Birmingham saw the great Genzebe Dibaba win her second gold in three days in the 1,500m, while Czech Pavel Maslak won his third 400m crown after a sensational double disqualification.

However, it was the 21-year-old American Coleman, winner of two silvers at last year’s World Outdoor Championships, who hogged center stage, following up his world record of 6.34 seconds set last month with an emphatic win in 6.37 seconds.

It was the joint second-fastest sprint in history, ensuring that the Atlanta flyer, the fastest man at 100m last year, has now run the three quickest times ever at the shorter distance.

“I have a good chance to lead the sport in the post-Bolt era, but like I’ve told so many others, loads of guys have the talent,” Coleman said after beating China’s Su Bingtian (Asian record 6.42 seconds) and US colleague Ronnie Baker (6.44 seconds) to the prize.

The peerless Ethiopian Dibaba, who on Thursday last week had lifted the 3,000m title, had her work cut out to achieve the double in the metric mile, but produced another solo tour de force.

Stretching her pursuers to breaking point by powering for home with nearly 1km left, the 27-year-old kept Britain’s silver medalist Laura Muir and Dutch defending champion Sifan Hassan at bay to win convincingly in 4 minutes, 5.27 seconds.

It made her only the fourth athlete ever to win five individual gold medals in the Championships.

Maslak sounded almost sheepish about his 400m win after the two athletes who finished ahead of him, Spain’s Oscar Husillos and the Dominican Republic’s Luguelin Santos, were disqualified for running out of their lanes.

The US’ Michael Cherry was promoted to silver, with Trinidad’s fifth-placed finisher Deon Lendore upgraded to bronze.

“They would have beaten me anyway so even if it is gold, it will have a bronze flavor for me,” Maslak said.

A classic heptathlon saw French Olympic champion Kevin Mayer snatch gold in the two-day, seven-discipline slog by just five points from his Canadian rival Damian Warner after a nail-biting 1,000m finale.

The US women enjoyed a stellar night with Sandi Morris taking pride of place by ending Katerina Stefanidi’s pole vault domination, handing the Greek bronze medalist her first defeat after 19 straight triumphs.

Kendra Harrison roared to the 60m hurdles title ahead of compatriot Christina Manning, clocking a championship record 7.7 seconds, while Courtney Okolo dominated the 400m for the US to win in a lifetime-best 50.55 seconds.

Poland’s Adam Kszczot, a master of the Indoor boards, made his familiar finishing prowess pay in the 800m, covering the final 200m lap in a searing 25.06 seconds to win in 1 minute, 47.47 seconds.

In the morning, Venezuela’s Yulimar Rojas, an athletics heroine who has shone in dark times for her nation, again made her compatriots proud as she successfully defended her triple jump crown with a leap of 14.63m.

Will Claye of the US took the equivalent men’s title with a world-leading 17.43m.

New Zealander Tom Walsh won the shot put gold with a lifetime best of 22.31m, which erased East German Ulf Timmermann’s 31-year-old championship record of 22.24m, the longest-standing World Indoor mark.

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