Athletics: Wariso able to survive his stupidity

European Athletics Championship: Britain's 400 metres trio advance despite misjudgement of Solomon

SOLOMON WARISO went to the edge of the precipice, looked over, and stepped back again here yesterday.

The man who earned the third 400 metres place at these European Championships at the expense of Roger Black came within hundredths of a second of what would have been an ignominious exit after he slowed too soon in his opening heat and failed to gain one of the three automatic qualifying places for today's semi- finals, for which Britain's other entrants, Mark Richardson and Iwan Thomas, qualified comfortably.

The misjudgement of Solomon occurred 50 metres from the line as, apparently secure in third place, he looked around him in exaggerated fashion and slowed, allowing Jan Podebradsky of the Czech Republic to pass him. Wariso had no time to respond, finishing fourth in 46.27sec to the Czech's 46.16.

There followed 20 minutes in Wariso's life that he will least want to remember. Venting his frustration by slamming his shoes on to the floor, he settled down to watch his fate determined by the three subsequent heats, hoping to progress as one of the four fastest losers.

His viewing was interrupted by the harshly jesting tones of Britain's former promotions officer, Andy Norman. "Get up Solomon," he said. "You've got to run again tomorrow. If you're lucky. Come on, get up. We'll take you outside and shoot you." Wariso did get his run, despite an uncomfortably fast final heat in which the fourth-placed runner matched his time.

After the controversy of his selection for the individual event here, following his performance in the AAA trials, where he beat Black to third place by 0.03sec in what was his first 400 metres appearance in an outdoor championship, Wariso arrived at this event under unusual pressure. It was not necessarily fair, but it was a fact.

"I thought I would probably go through because of my time," he said. "But you can't be sure of these things. I saw some of the guys running personal bests." In his defence, Wariso said that he did not relish running in the morning.

"I had to get up at six this morning, and I don't run well early," he said.

However, he is now through. And having reduced his personal best by more than a second to 44.68 in the AAA final, this 31-year-old is talented enough to make up for his near lapse with another impressive performance.

Wariso's fortune was not shared by his colleague, Nick Buckfield. The 25-year-old pole vaulter from Crawley, who only made the trip out here following a last minute fitness test, landed badly in the pit during the qualifying competition and injured his back.

He was taken to hospital, where X-rays showed he had sustained no serious damage, but he returned, shaken, to the British team hotel with severe bruising to his hip.

It was a miserable exit for an athlete who had not been able to compete since improving his British record to 5.80m in Crete on 27 May, due to a knee injury which was eventually treated by the Swiss doctor, Roland Biedert, whose clinic has previously been used by athletes such as Roger Black and Sally Gunnell.

Diane Modahl, seeking to reach her first major 800m championship final since winning her appeal against a four-year doping ban, failed narrowly, finishing one position outside the four qualifying places with a time of 2min 00.08sec, just behind Natalya Dukhnova of Belarus, who recorded 1.59.95.

Aleksandr Bagach of the Ukraine, who had sparked an appeal after winning the shot putt the previous night because of the weighted bindings around his calfs which might have assisted his speed of turning in the circle, was allowed to keep his gold medal by the official jury.

Another competitor who had cause to be thankful to the officials was Italy's Stephano Tilli, who was disqualified after appearing to get through the previous day's second round of the 100 metres. His offence was unusual - after an altercation with a track marshall, he had struck the man's hat from his head. But he was allowed back into the event after apologising.

The National Anthem played for the first time at these championships after Tanni Grey won the 800m wheelchair race in a time of 2min 06.68sec, holding off the challenge of Germany's Lilly Angrenny and Sweden's Sofia Dettmann.

It was the first European title of an illustrious career for the 29-year- old from Birmingham, who has been competing at international level for 13 years and won the gold medal in this event at the Atlanta Paralympics of 1996.

Christine Arron of France won the women's 100m title in a European record of 10.73sec, after overhauling Russia's fast- starting the defending champion, Irina Privalova, who took the silver in a time of 10.83.

Arron, with a distinctively dyed ginger hair, comes from Guadelope, birth- place of France's world and Olypmpic 400m champion, Marie-Jose Perec.

Walker's run, results, page 22

Life and Style
A teenager boy wakes up.
Life and Style
It is believed that historically rising rates of alcohol consumption have contributed to the increase
food + drink
An Apple iPhone 6 stands on display at the Apple Store
businessRegulators give iPhone 6 and 6 Plus the green light
Arts and Entertainment
Critics say Kipling showed loathing for India's primitive villagers in The Jungle Book
filmChristopher Walken, Bill Murray, Scarlett Johanssen Idris Elba, Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cate Blanchett and Christian Bale
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Playing to win: for Tanith Carey, pictured with Lily, right, and Clio, even simple games had to have an educational purpose
lifeTanith Carey explains what made her take her foot off the gas
Arts and Entertainment
Arts and Entertainment
The White Sails Hospital and Spa is to be built in the new Tunisia Economic City.
architectureRussian billionaire designs boat-shaped hospital for new Dubai-style Tunisia Economic City
Life and Style
Arts and Entertainment
A still from Duncan Campbell's hour-long film 'It for Others'
Turner Prize 2014
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Tony Hadley in a scene from ‘Soul Boys Of The Western World’
musicSpandau Ballet are back together - on stage and screen
Life and Style
Bearing up: Sebastian Flyte with his teddy Aloysius in Brideshead Revisited
lifePhilippa Perry explains why a third of students take a bear to uni
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Alan Sugar appearing in a shot from Apprentice which was used in a Cassette Boy mashup
artsA judge will rule if pieces are funny enough to be classed as parodies
Arts and Entertainment
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Art & Design Teacher (4 days - Tue-Fri)

£21000 - £31000 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: This outstanding school w...

IT Support Analyst - London - £13/hr

£10 - £13 per hour + Benefits: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group has been engag...

Maths Teacher

£110 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Reading: Maths Teacher needed for a Fa...

Music, Drama & Performing Arts Technician

Negotiable: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: Experienced Music, Drama ...

Day In a Page

Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

Inside the E15 'occupation'

We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
Witches: A history of misogyny

Witches: A history of misogyny

The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style