Freshly-minted Rio Olympic champion Elaine Thompson of Jamaica gave proof of her premier status as world’s best woman sprinter with a dominating 100m victory in 11th Diamond League meeting at Lausanne on Thursday. Thompson’s compatriot Asafa Powell took the honors in men’s 100m. Other Olympic champions, who repeated their Rio performances were; Colombian Caterine Ibarguen in women’s triple jump and USA’s Dalilah Muhammad in women’s 400m hurdles. But a much better show came from athletes, who either couldn’t go to Rio or did not make it to top podium finish in 2016 Olympic Games. Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman, who finished fourth at Rio in men’s 1500m, beat Rio medalists USA’s Matthew Centrowitz and Kenya’s Asbel Kiprop in the 1000m event at Lausanne. Olympic silver winner Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba won women’s 3000m with a new meet record; in Caster Semenya’s absence Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba crushed women’s 800m field; USA’s Rio bronze winner Sam Kendricks won men’s pole-vault and Netherlands’ Churandy Martina won men’s 200m with a blazing run in 19.81.
After a month-long break for Olympics, the 2016 IAAF Diamond League season resumed with the eleventh meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland. In the two premier 100m events for men and women, Jamaica reigned supreme. Rio Olympics’ 100 and 200m winner Elaine Thompson blasted the women’s 100m field at Lausanne with a 10.78s victory. USA’s Jenna Prandini and Morolake Akinosun were second and third in 11.11 and 11.16 respectively. Thompson’s time was more creditable because there was a mix-up at the start. Now Thompson will prepare herself for a showdown with Dutchwoman Dafne Schippers at Brussels on September 9. Thompson’s compatriot Asafa Powell won men’s 100m by clocking 9.96 ahead of Ivory Coast’s Ben Youssef Meite and GBR’s Joel Fearon, who clocked 10.01 and 10.05 respectively. USA’s Rio gold medalist Dalilah Muhammad won women’s 400m hurdles by clocking 53.78 to leave GBR’s Doyle Eilidh at second place with 54.45. Denmark’s Sara Petersen was third at 54.98. Colombian triple jumper Caterine Ibarguen also repeated her Rio gold medal show by winning at Lausanne. Ibarguen reached 14.76 ahead of second-placed Kazakhstan’s Olga Rypakova’s 14.53. Paraskeví Papahristou of Greece was third in 14.18.
Men’s 1000m field at Lausanne featured most top athletes of 1500m regular category. Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman, who finished fourth at Rio crushed the field by winning in 2:13.49. Rio gold medalist USA’s Matthew Centrowitz was far behind on sixth spot with 2:16.67 while Kenyan World Champion Asbel Kiprop finished 4th in a lowly 2:14.23. US woman Kendra Harrison, who missed Rio and created a world record in the London DL, continued her great form in 100m hurdles. The 23-year old Harrison fought off a poor start at Lausanne to finish first in 12.42s. 2008 Olympic champion Dawn Harper Nelson clocked 12.71 ahead of Jasmin Stowers’ 12.75 to complete the 1-2-3 for USA in the event.
Netherlands Churandy Martina topped men’s 200m field in 19.81 to beat Panama’s Alonso Edward, who clocked 19.92. Jamaican Julian Forte finished third in 20.16. In men’s 110m hurdles, Rio Olympics’ top two reversed their position at Lausanne, when Spain’s Orlando Ortega edged out Jamaica’s Omar McLeod by a mere 0.01 second. Ortega won in 13.11 to McLeod’s 13.12. Frenchman Dimitri Bascou was third in 13.25. Olympic bronze medalist USA’s Lashawn Merritt recorded his third DL victory this season by winning men’s 400m in 44.50. Bahamas’ Steven Gardiner finished second in 44.75 and Dutchman Liemarvin Bonevacia third in 45.26. In men’s 400m hurdles, Estonian Rasmus Magi defeated Kenyan World Champion Nicholas Bett to win in 48.59s to Bett’s 48.68. Spain’s Sergio Fernandez finished third in 49.22.
Women’s 3000m was won by Rio’s silver medalist Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba ahead of two Kenyans Hellen Obiri and Mercy Cherono. The top three clocked 8:31.84, 8:33.96 and 8:34.49 respectively. But Dibaba’s time was a far cry from Almaz Ayana’s world-lead time of 8:23.11 that was set at Doha DL. In the absence of Rio gold medalist Caster Semenya from women’s 800m, Olympic silver medalist Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba was the emphatic winner at Lausanne in 1:57.71. Kenya’s Eunice Sum was second in 1:58.41 while GBR’s Lynsey Sharp finished third in 1:58.82.
Kenya swept men’s 3000m steeplechase with top 5 places. Abraham Kibiwott won with 8:09.58; Nicholas Kiptanui Bett was second in 8:10.07 and Abel Kiprop Mutai third in 8:17.88. In men’s pole-vault, Olympic bronze medalist Sam Kendricks of USA leaped to the DL meeting record of 5.92m ahead of Rio silver winner and world-record holder Frenchman Renaud Lavillenie, who could reach a modest 5.72. Poland’s Piotr Lisek also cleared 5.72 but was third on count-back. Olympic silver medalist high jumper Mutaz Essa Barshim of Qatar won at Lausanne with a clearance of 2.35m. GBR’s Robbie Grabarz was second in 2.32 on count-back ahead of USA’s Erik Kynard. Ukraine’s Olympic bronze medalist Bogdan Bondarenko was fourth.
USA’s Tianna Bartoletta couldn’t emulate her gold-medal winning Rio performance in women’s long jump and finished fifth at Lausanne. The event was won by Serbia’s Rio bronze medalist Ivana Spanovic with 6.83. GBR’s Lorraine Ugen was second in 6.71 and Russia’s Darya Klishina third in 6.50. In men’s discus, Belgium’s Philip Milanov made amends for his ninth-place finish at Rio to win at Lausanne in 65.61m. Austria’s Lukas Weisshaidinger was second in 64.84 and Hungary’s Zoltan Kovago third in 64.52. In women’s javelin, Latvia’s Madara Palameika finished first with 65.29m to edge out Czech world record-holder Barbora Spotakova, who could only reach 64.84. Belarusian Tatsiana Khaladovich finished third with 64.15. In women’s shot put, New Zealand’s Rio silver winner Valerie Adams topped the field with 19.94m. Rio gold winner USA’s Michelle Carter was second with 19.49 and German Christina Schwanitz, third in 19.33.
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