Ennis rises to occasion with greatest display

Briton recovers from career-threatening injury to triumph. Simon Turnbull reports

In 1936 it was Jesse Owens. In 2009 it was Jess out on her own. On the opening weekend of the World Championships, the first major track and field championships to be held in the grand Olympiastadion here since the Olympic Games of 1936, Jessica Ennis – Jess, to her friends – produced a tour de force of a performance in the women's heptathlon.



For Owens, there were four events in 1936 – 100 metres, 200m, long jump, 4x100m – and four gold medals. For Ennis, there were seven disciplines within one combined event.

By the end of the last of them, the 800m last night, the Sheffield woman was standing a whopping 238 points clear of her rivals as the undisputed world champion.

Two years ago in Osaka, Ennis missed out on a World Championship medal by one place and 41 points. Last summer she missed out on the Olympics with a triple stress fracture of the right foot that doctors told her might threaten her athletics career. The 23-year-old psychology graduate might only be 5ft 4in from head to toe but she has no shortage of mettle.

With the guidance of her coach of 11 years, Toni Minichiello, Ennis has picked up the pieces this summer and built herself into a world champion, Britain's first in the heptathlon. Denise Lewis never quite managed to achieve the feat. Her British record survived by a margin of 100 points but Ennis's victory could hardly have been more emphatic.

She crossed the line first in the 800m, clocking 2min 12.22sec, leaving her with a lifetime best tally of 6,731 points – a veritable street clear of Jennifer Oeser, who took silver with 6,493 points, much to the delight of the German crowd. Bronze went to Pole Kamila Chudzik (6,471) with the Olympic champion Nataliya Dobrynska of the Ukraine out of the medals in fourth (6,444).

''It's been the longest two days of my life but the best,'' Ennis said after a lap of honour rudely interrupted by Usain Bolt's stunning world record 100m run. ''I can't believe it. I'm the world champion. I feel like crying. I've dreamt so many times about becoming world champion and doing a lap of honour. It's the best feeling in the world. I was at such a low point last year. To come back from that and so strongly ... it's amazing.''

Top of the world rankings since May, when she returned to heptathlon competition with a personal best score of 6,587 points at Desenzano in Italy, Ennis had been a class apart right from the start in Berlin. She won the opening event on Saturday, the 100m hurdles, in 12.93sec, a season's best. She won the high jump too, with 1.92m, another year's best. Then she threw a lifetime best of 14.14m in the shot and clocked 23.25sec in the 200m, another season's best.

All of which left the pride of the City of Sheffield Athletics Club 307 points clear at the end of day one, ahead of Dobrynska, the woman expected to be her closest threat. The Ukrainian was a woman inspired in Beijing last summer, but in Berlin her challenge was broken before the final day.

There were a few worrying moments during the opening event yesterday when Ennis clutched an ice pack to her left thigh after taking the first of her three efforts in the long jump. After leaving the track with a best mark of 6.29m, though, the Briton laughed off the concern. ''I haven't got a problem,'' she said. ''I was just trying to keep as cool as possible.''

She managed to achieve that in every respect. With a throw of 43.54m in the javelin and a winning flourish in the 800m, Jess was home and hosed with a golden glow in Berlin.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
The 67P/CG comet as seen from the Philae lander
scienceThe most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Arts and Entertainment
Ian McKellen as Gandalf in The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies
film
Sport
football
Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Koenig, creator of popular podcast Serial, which is to be broadcast by the BBC
tvReview: The secret to the programme's success is that it allows its audience to play detective
News
Ruby Wax has previously written about her mental health problems in her book Sane New World
people
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

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executives - OTE £60,000

£25000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you passionate about Custom...

Recruitment Genius: Care Workers Required - The London Borough of Bromley

£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This homecare agency is based in Beckenh...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executives - OTE £50,000

£25000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you passionate about Custom...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executives - OTE £50,000

£25000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you passionate about Custom...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas