28th August 2011

Daegu Sunday Morning Action


28 August 2011

On the second morning session at the World Championships there was more successful qualifying for the Aviva Great Britain and Northern Ireland team with Andy Turner (coach: Lloyd Cowan), Hannah England (Bud Baldaro) and Martyn Rooney (Nick Dakin) all progressing to their respective semi finals.

However there was disappointment for both Holly Bleasdale (Julian Raffalli) and Lisa Dobriskey (Ricky Soos) as well as an injury blow to Kate Dennison (Scott Simpson) in a continuation of the rollercoaster ride of experience customary at major championships.

British record holder Holly Bleasdale (Julien Raffalli) endured a tough baptism to the world of Senior championship athletics when she exited the qualifying competition having no-heighted with three failed attempts at 4.25m.

The youngster who has enjoyed an outstanding year up until this week was disappointed but not disheartened by events at the Daegu stadium:

“Maybe the pressure got to me a bit,” she admitted.

“It is definitely something to learn from. I knew it was going to be hard. My main aim (this season) was the Under 23s and that’s what I did and I’m happy with that. I was a bit flat and wasn’t at my best. I felt good it’s just that I wasn’t getting the speed into the vault.

“I will look back on it with my coach and try and improve on it for the future. It’s been a really good experience – the athlete’s village and my first holding camp have been good. I will take that into the next Championships. “

There was also disappointment for Kate Dennison (Scott Simpson) who had looked impressive in working her way up to 4.50m in qualifying and was looking good for progression to the final when the former UK record holder was forced to retire from the competition with an injury to her shin.

Lifting the team’s spirits this morning however, Andy Turner (Lloyd Cowan) lined up against China’s Liu Xiang in his heat of the 110m hurdles but made light work sealing automatic qualification with a solid second place in 13.32 seconds in a controlled performance out in lane one.

The European and Commonwealth Champion said: “I was tentative over the first hurdle but once I got into my rhythm it felt really easy. I knew I was in a qualification position after the first and second hurdle.

“I think I could have ran a PB if I wanted to and I’m very happy to have run that. I’m excited and feel good to go.”

2009 World Championship fourth placer William Sharman (Malcolm Arnold) looked to be recapturing his former sparkle with a solid run of 13.52 for fifth in the third of the four heats, that time more than enough to qualify as a fastest loser for Monday night’s semi final. However he had mixed feelings about his morning’s work:

“I was hacked off that I didn’t maintain my lead to the finish line because I had a great start,” he said.

“It’s encouraging it’s one of the fastest I’ve ran this season and faster than my first round in Berlin. I think there is something more I can do in the warm-up to try and prepare me for the second half of the race. “

However, Sharman’s training partner Lawrence Clarke (Malcolm Arnold) was unable to progress in his World championship debut when finishing fifth in 13.65 in his second heat.

“There was no reason why it went wrong today,” he said.

“The only issue was that I couldn’t see any of the Americans or Jamaicans – the quick ones. I haven’t got the experience to run that quickly without much pressure. Once you are in your lane you have got tunnel vision – so I just have to be quicker because I am not running times quick enough to get in those top places. “

In the women’s 1500m heats UK Trials winner Hannah England (Bud Baldaro) ran an intelligent race to ensure her qualification to Tuesday’s semi final stage. The Oxford City athlete stayed out of trouble running wide in lane three for much of the race and ensured she was in pole position to take to the front and cross the line first in 4:13.45 in the first of three heats.

She said: I felt really good. It was nice to feel like that in the race. You are always nervous when you are warming up but it felt really good today in fact I was trying to hold back and not kick too early.”

Team-mate Lisa Dobriskey (Ricky Soos) however endured an upset in her qualifying heat with bumping and barging relegating her position within the pack and trailing home in eleventh in 4:12.70. It left the reigning silver medallist fifth fastest for the remaining six slots with one heat still to watch. The final heat however was much faster, with all but one of the field finishing inside Dobriskey’s time seeing her eliminated.

“I felt like I raced really well and felt like I maintained my position but my legs weren’t there when they needed to be,” she recalled.

“I panicked a bit and pressed a bit too hard and that was it. I don’t know what happened. I’m very disappointed.”

There was a better outcome for Martyn Rooney (Nick Dakin) however in qualifying for the men’s 400m semi finals. Rooney, who has had a slow start to his season managed a season’s best of 45.30 in his heat for second – ahead of Paralympic star Oscar Pistorius who finished in third.

Rooney – who appeared to be off the pace at 200m, worked a superb bend to enter the home straight in the lead and was just pipped at the line by Chris Brown of the Bahamas.

“That’s feels better – but I said I was going to come here and run a lot better. I was hoping to get a least an A standard but I’m happy because it’s progress.

“The Aviva training camp in Ulsan went really well. I’m happy and my coach was happy how with we used it. But there are execution things I need to do.”

The final action from the morning came by way of the 100m athletes and Jeanette Kwakye (Michael Afilaka) opened the GB team account by qualifying in third place in her heat with 11.42 behind talented American Carmelita Jeter.

Laura Turner (Linford Christie) was next up and finished fourth in a tough heat with 11.45, whilst Anyika Onuora (Lloyd Cowan) got off to a superb start in her heat but crossed the line in fifth with 11.41.

It meant that Turner and Onuora left the competition, just missing out on fastest loser places.

Kwakye said: “It was good. I’m through and that’s the main thing. I’m not necessarily pleased with the time  but I’m through and we will take it in to tomorrow to really turn it up and turn it on.”

Turner said: “Technically it wasn’t too bad just not very fast. I’ve watched it back and felt like I was stuck in fourth gear and couldn’t get out of it into fifth gear. Technically it’s not bad at all so I’m happy that I’m starting to piece a race together. “

Onuora said:  “I would have been a lot happier to automatically qualify instead of a waiting game. I’m happy in this environment coming up against the big girls which is exactly what I aim for. I treat each race as it comes as I can only take it step by step.  I don’t think ‘now I have got the 200m’ I just prepare for each round.”

Sunday’s action featuring Aviva GB & NI team members continues this evening with and includes Andrew Osagie (Craig Winrow) in the men’s 800m semi finals, the men’s 10,000m final with Mo Farah (Alberto Salazar) as well as all three GB representatives in the men’s 100m finals.

UKA will provide daily news reports from the 2011 World Championships on www.uka.org.uk and quotes from Aviva GB & NI athletes as well as regular updates via twitter @uka_athletics and Facebook www.facebook.com/UKAofficial

For full results visit: http://daegu2011.iaaf.org/Home.aspx