Anna Chicherova (© Getty Images)
Russia’s London 2012 Olympic High Jump champion Anna Chicherova will be one of the main stars of the IAAF World Challenge meeting in Beijing on 21 May, organisers announced on Thursday (11).
Chicherova, now 30, will be returning to China for the first time since she took her first Olympic medal when she finished third at the 2008 Olympic Games.
Her Beijing outing will form a crucial part of her preparations en route to defending the World title she won two years ago at the IAAF World Championships on home soil in Moscow this summer.
Another 2011 World champion from Daegu appearing in Beijing will be the US hurdler Jason Richardson. In what could be one of the top track races of the meeting, Richardson will face his compatriot David Oliver in the 110m Hurdles.
Both men are among the select group of hurdlers who have run under 13 seconds and, like Chicherova, Oliver also won an Olympic bronze medal in Beijing five years ago.
Another top American athlete in action in the Chinese capital will be World 100m champion Carmelita Jeter.
Jeter won the 100m silver medal at last summer’s Olympic Games, and a bronze medal in the 200m, before providing the anchor leg on the USA team that broke the 4x100m World record in London.
She is the second-fastest woman ever over 100m with a time of 10.64 which she ran in another Chinese city, Shanghai, in 2009 and will race over that distance in Beijing.
The Beijing organisers are also putting together an outstanding men's 100m race and have signed up Jamaica’s former men’s 100m World record-holder Asafa Powell and the USA’s former Olympic 100m champion, and 2012 bronze medallist Justin Gatlin.
Russia’s reigning Olympic and World Hammer Throw champion Tatyana Lysenko is the top name among the women throwers.
Organisers for the IAAF