USA's Tianna Bartoletta in the long jump (© Getty Images)
Former world champion Tianna Bartoletta’s magnificent return to form in 2014 has included five contests beyond 6.90m with one over the magic seven-metre barrier. That 7.02m leap in Oslo puts her top of the world list and favourite to get the better of Europe’s talented pair Eloyse Lesueur and Ivana Spanovic in Marrakech.
Those two have been in good form too, however. Lesueur added the European title to her world indoor crown in Zurich and jumped 6.92m to win the Paris IAAF Diamond League in July, while Spanovic extended the Serbian record twice early in the summer and beat Bartoletta at the recent Welklasse meeting to finish ahead of Lesueur in the Diamond Race.
The Americas team will also look to Commonwealth bronze medallist Christabel Nettey for good second-string points, while the Asia-Pacific team is represented by two less experienced athletes, 20-year-old Australian Margaret Gayen and China’s former Asian youth and junior champion Lu Minjia, who’s 21.
Youngest of the lot, however, is African and Commonwealth Games champion Ese Brume. The 18-year-old Nigerian carries the host continent’s hopes, supported by Cameroon’s African triple jump champion, Joelle Mbumi Nkouindjin, who’ll be competing in her second event of the weekend.
Matt Brown for the IAAF