More medal success for Britain at World Championships

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Great Britain enjoyed their most successful World Championships for 10 years after claiming two more medals on the final day of competition in Berlin.



Silver in the men's 4x400m and for Lisa Dobriskey in the women's 1,500m gave Britain a total of six medals - two gold, two silver and two bronze - the most since seven were won in Seville in 1999 (one gold, four silver, two bronze).

Jessica Ennis and Phillips Idowu struck gold in the heptathlon and triple jump respectively, with Jenny Meadows (800m) and the men's 4x100m relay team taking bronze.

The total of six surpassed by one the target set by UK Athletics head coach Charles van Commenee, who said: "It's encouraging, that's probably the best word. I'm happy."

Dobriskey actually crossed the line third but was upgraded to silver when Spain's Natalia Rodriguez was disqualified in a controversial finish to the 1,500m.

Rodriguez had attempted to overtake leader Gelete Burka of Ethiopia down the inside with around 200m to go, but the pair collided and Burka was sent crashing to the track.

Rodriguez stumbled but was able to continue and crossed the line first ahead of Maryam Yusuf Jamal of Bahrain, with Dobriskey just 0.01s behind.

"It was so close to the finish I just thought 'Don't screw it up, don't come fourth or fifth,"' said Dobriskey, who was fourth in the Olympic final last year after misjudging her tactics.

"The opposite happened to Beijing, I was just running out of petrol in the last few metres. It's quite a satisfying feeling because I couldn't have done any more.

"It was a true championship race with lots of pushing and shoving and, having come through the rounds it really made me believe I'm a true championship performer now."

And before the disqualification was confirmed, she added: "I wouldn't like a silver medal on default, I would rather stick with the bronze."

Dobriskey was a major injury doubt until recently after a stress fracture to her back over the winter and admitted: "I didn't think I would make the team.

"Two weeks into June I still wasn't running, it was game over pretty much and I really thought it wasn't going to happen. I've got such a fantastic coach in George Gandy, I don't think there's many people that can know how to prepare an athlete and get them in PB shape within four, five, six weeks.

"He's done such an amazing job and I've had so much support from UKA, the doctors...it's been phenomenal. A medal is something that I've dreamed of and it's not just for me."

In the 4x400m, Conrad Williams, Michael Bingham, Rob Tobin and Martyn Rooney claimed silver in the men's 4x400m.

After an excellent first leg from youngster Williams, Bingham took Britain into a second place they would only briefly relinquish to Australia midway through the third leg.

Tobin kept his cool to reclaim second place down the home straight and Rooney did likewise as Britain clocked 3:00.53, almost three seconds down on the dominant American quartet with Australia in third.

Tobin said: "I went out nice and relaxed and knew I was going to come home strong. The day we've beaten the Aussies in the Ashes we had to come and do it on the track as well."

Bingham, seventh in the individual 400m, said: "These guys gave me such an uplift and I didn't want to go out too quick, so I relaxed, stayed calm and set up Rooney in a good position."

And Rooney, sixth in the Olympic final last year, added: "It's my first senior medal and it's about time we got a relay medal. We've had good teams and always come fourth or sixth."

Britain's Mo Farah earlier finished seventh in the 5,000 metres final as Kenenisa Bekele completed a first ever long-distance double in the World Championships.

The Ethiopian had unusually been forced to set the pace for some of the 12 and a half laps but still had enough left to win a sprint finish with America's Bernard Lagat down the home straight. James Kwalia C'Kurui of Qatar took bronze.

Farah, sixth in Osaka two years ago, had looked uncomfortable early on and sat at the back of the pack, but moved up to sixth at the bell.

But the Somalia-born 26-year-old was unable to live with the finishing burst of the leaders and had to settle for seventh in 13 minutes 19.69 seconds, 2.6secs behind the winner.

Farah said: "I felt all right, I just couldn't go with it. I tried to put myself in the right position. With 300m to go they started pulling away and I came round the bend and thought just hang in there but they changed gear again in the home straight.

"I'm disappointed, I was hoping I could come away with a medal and improve from two years ago but, looking back, I don't think I could have done any more."

The team of Lee McConnell, Christine Ohuruogu, Vicki Barr and Nicola Sanders finished fourth in the women's 4x400m relay final, but were never in contention for a medal.

The United States took gold more than three seconds ahead of Jamaica with Russia third and Britain more than seven seconds behind the winners in fourth.

Comments