Nadine Broersen after winning pentathlon gold at the 2014 IAAF World Indoor Championships (© Getty Images)
In an exciting finale to the women’s pentathlon, six out of the eight athletes set a personal best in the 800m with the remaining two ending up with a season’s best.
Nadine Broersen did exactly what she had to in the race, dropping to the back of the field with the others starting fast. But the 23-year-old remained calm and finished with a 2:14.97 personal best, 1.71 seconds faster than her earlier indoor best from 2013.
The Dutchwoman scored a world-leading 4830 points for a national record, wiping off Karin Rucksthul’s previous mark of 4801 from the 2007 European Indoor Championships in Birmingham.
It was the best comeback possible for Broersen, as she came to Moscow thinking about a medal and then tripped in the first event, the 100m hurdles. She still managed to finish in 10th place at those World Championships, showing great resilience.
Brianne Theisen-Eaton was too far away from Broersen, but ran a brave 800m race to overcome the 2.2 seconds difference between Ukrainian Alina Fodorova and her for the second place. The Canadian led the race almost until the end, finishing in a personal best of 2:10.07. It crushed her previous indoor best of 2:11.82 from the 2011 NCAA Championships and came quite close to her 2:09.03 outdoor best achieved in the magical 800m heptathlon race in Moscow last summer.
The 25-year-old set a national record of 4768, bettering the 4555 mark she set in 2012.
Fodorova was just able to hold on to the bronze medal with Sharon Day-Monroe running away fast at the front. The 24-year-old Ukrainian clocked a 2:15.31 personal best for a total score of 4724, also a PB.
Day-Monroe, the pre-championships world leader, just missed out on a medal despite a great 800m race. She did all she could, winning the 800m in 2:09.80, cutting more than two seconds off her previous best of 2:11.89 from 2012. She too came close to her outdoor PB of 2:08.94 from Moscow 2013, but in the end just six points stood between her and the bronze medal. Day-Monroe scored 4718 points for the fourth place, her second best total in this event.
German Claudia Rath finished the pentathlon well, clocking a 2:10.29 personal best in the 800m to finish fifth with 4681, adding more than 300 points to her previous best from 2011. Yana Maksimava of Belarus was sixth with 4651 points, world champion Hanna Melnychenko was seventh with 4587 and Karolina Tyminska of Poland scored 4557 points for eighth place.
Mirko Jalava for the IAAF