Athletics: Holmes upset by Russian charge

Kelly Holmes insisted yesterday that she was capable of beating her friend and training partner Maria Mutola, who won gold to her silver in Tuesday's 800 metres final. And she added that she would not hesitate to do so despite all the help and encouragement the Mozambique runner has offered her over the last year.

The two athletes are due to meet again a week tomorrow over 800 metres in the IAAF Golden League meeting in Brussels, where Mutola needs to win to secure the $1m jackpot on offer to any athlete completing the six-meeting series unbeaten.

Earlier this month Holmes - who will not compete in the 1500 metres here - said that if she were running in that race she would not deny her friend the victory, although at that stage she was planning to concentrate on the longer distance.

Yesterday, speaking in a conference room halfway up the Eiffel Tower, she took a loftier view, brushing her words off as "a tongue-in-cheek comment" and denying that there was anything which would hold her back from beating the world and Olympic champion if she were able.

"If that situation arises I'm going to just do it," she said. "I'll go for it. When you get in a race you have to try and win.

"If training goes well I believe I have a great shot at beating Maria, if not this year then next year. At the end of the day, I'm still a rival."

The 33-year-old Olympic bronze medallist, whose season has been disrupted by a calf injury, admitted she had been annoyed by the speculation after her final that Mutola had helped to set her up for a run to the line, a charge levelled by the Russian bronze medallist, Natalya Khruschelova.

"It does get to you when people criticise," Holmes said. "Why can't they just give me the respect for what I've tried to achieve? It's as if they're always trying to undermine me.

"I've won 11 major medals, and I've had injury problems since 1996. I've had five medals from the last six major championships. How many people can say that? I rise to the occasion.

"The only issue here is the fact that Maria and I come from different countries. We know that Ethiopians and Kenyans help each other out and no one complains about that.

"The Russian could have come past me on the inside lane. I had my own plan to take it easy on the first lap and go between 250 and 180 metres from the end. Maria went to the front because she wanted to avoid getting caught up - she was nearly tripped in the heats."

Holmes added that, having delayed her decision to enter the Championships until an hour before the deadline, she entered the 800m only in the expectation of getting practice for the 1500m.

"I only took the decision after the semi-final," she said with a grin. "That's the truth. It could have been a bad decision - but it turned out to be a good one."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Suited and booted in the Lanvin show at the Paris menswear collections
fashionParis Fashion Week
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Kara Tointon and Jeremy Piven star in Mr Selfridge
tvActress Kara Tointon on what to expect from Series 3
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
An asteroid is set to pass so close to Earth it will be visible with binoculars
news
News
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Austen Lloyd: Private Client Solicitor - Oxford

Excellent Salary : Austen Lloyd: OXFORD - REGIONAL FIRM - An excellent opportu...

Austen Lloyd: Clinical Negligence Associate / Partner - Bristol

Super Package: Austen Lloyd: BRISTOL - SENIOR CLINICAL NEGLIGENCE - An outstan...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Consultant - Solar Energy - OTE £50,000

£15000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Fantastic opportunities are ava...

Recruitment Genius: Compute Engineer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Compute Engineer is required to join a globa...

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project