Report22 May 2016

Samaai flies in Rabat – IAAF Diamond League


Ruswahl Samaai in the long jump at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Rabat (© Kirby Lee)

The men’s long jump proved to be the top field event of the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Rabat with Ruswahl Samaai jumping 8.38m to equal the African all-comers’ record and his own personal best on Sunday (22).

The South African had to come from behind after Australia’s world silver medallist Fabrice Lapierre jumped 8.31m in the third round but uncorked his winning leap one round later.

Lapierre improved to 8.36m in the fifth round, albeit with a massive following wind of 5.2m/s, but had to settle for second after neither man could improve with their last efforts.

USA’s world leader Marquise Goodwin, who jumped 8.45m in Guadeloupe a week ago, was more than a foot short of that mark and finished third with 8.11m.

Ekaterini Stefanidi made a big addition to the African all-comers’ record, which had stood at 4.56m, when she cleared a meeting record of 4.75m, going well clear at that height before failing at 4.80m.

Switzerland’s Nicole Buchler cleared 4.70m before passing at 4.75m but she then also failed at what would have been a national record height of 4.80m and finished second.

Ibarguen win streak now 33

Caterine Ibarguen extended her triple jump winning streak to 33 competitions, but with slightly more ease than expected.

The Colombian two-time world champion, jumping last out of the seven women, led from the first round with her opening effort of 14.38m, which itself would have sufficed for the win.

She improved to 14.41m in the second round and, with the competition won, bounded out to 14.51m with her final effort despite being some way behind the edge of the board.

All the competitors had issues with the swirling breeze – and it was to cause problems in several field events – but Greece’s Paraskevi Papachristou fared the best of the rest and jumped 14.28m in both the first and fourth rounds to take second place.

The challenge of Venezuela’s world indoor champion Yulimar Rojas never materialised as she struggled to put her phases together and, after pushing Ibarguen hard at the opening IAAF Diamond League meeting in Doha, had to settle for fourth place with a relatively modest 14.11m.

Piotr Malachowski was an equally convincing winner of the discus, Poland’s world champion unleashing three throws better than anyone else could manage.

His third-round mark of 65.91m took him into the lead and he improved to 66.88m. With the competition won, he then reached a meeting record of 67.45m with the last throw of the competition for his second consecutive IAAF Diamond League victory.

His compatriot Robert Urbanek got second place courtesy of his fifth-round effort of 65.04m.

Four-time world champion Valerie Adams landed six valid throws in the women's shot put, all of which were better than her nearest rival, topped by her fifth-round distance of 19.68m.

More than a metre behind New Zealand's 2014 IAAF World Athlete of the Year, Hungary's world indoor silver medallist Anita Marton took second place with 18.51m

Palameika gets wind assistance

The women’s javelin turned out to be a slightly strange affair, not that Latvia’s Madara Palameika will mind.

In the third round, the tricky wind conditions changed briefly to her advantage and Palameika launched her implement out to 64.76m, more than four metres farther than anyone else at that stage in the competition.

Estonia’s Liina Laasma closed over the next two rounds, throwing 62.41m with her fourth effort and then adding 48 centimetres to her national record with 63.65m in the fifth round to finish second. But the only other woman to throw beyond 60 metres was Australia’s Kathryn Mitchell, who threw 60.68m with her first effort and then had five fouls.

Bogdan Bondarenko jumped 2.36m just under a year ago in Rabat but on this occasion he needed only 2.31m to secure the win in the men's high jump and 10 Diamond Race points.

The 2013 world champion slithered over his winning height on his second attempt, the bar twitching after being stroked by the Ukrainian’s backside but it stayed on the uprights before three failures at 2.34m brought the contest to an end.

Doha winner Erik Kynard finished second on this occasion as the only man to also get over 2.28m, having a clean sheet and leading throughout the rather lacklustre contest before being unable to negotiate 2.31m.

Italy's world indoor champion Gianmarco Tamberi had an unhappy start to his outdoor campaign as he only managed 2.25m on his third attempt and, going no higher, finished down in sixth.

Phil Minshull for the IAAF