World Championships 2013: Perri Shakes-Drayton hopes shaking off demons has silver lining
The 400m hurdler will go for gold this afternoon
the Luzhniki Stadium
Wednesday 14 August 2013
Perri Shakes-Drayton has already overcome one particular hurdle: making her first major global final. Having missed out at the 2011 World Championships and last summer's Olympic final, she can now have aspirations to add a third gold medal to Britain's tally so far later tonight.
Despite enjoying the season of her life, in which she won double gold at the European Indoors and sealed victory at the European Team Championships, silver is looking the colour most likely to be draped around her neck in the 400m hurdles today.
Zuzana Hejnova has yet to put a foot wrong this season and, while her London 2012 rival has beaten her in the past, she is yet to do so this season. Shakes-Drayton's biggest obstacle has been to overcome the mental block of not making a global final. Now she says she is running free from those shackles – and anything is possible.
Asked about coming up short at the Olympics, she said: "It came into my head [in the semi-finals]. I thought to myself, 'I've been here before'. Then I thought, 'why are you thinking like this, Perri? You've got to put that behind you because it's in the past. Come on, you feel good'. You've got to forget about the past and think about the positives."
The British team have reason to be positive going into the sixth day of competition here in Moscow. There are two other potential medal candidates in Robbie Grabarz and Hannah England.
Both have endured mixed seasons but they have major championship pedigree: Grabarz won high jump bronze at last year's Olympics and England won 1500m silver at the 2011 Worlds in Daegu.
In 2012, Grabarz was consistently jumping in the mid to high 2.30s. But his best this season of 2.31m is some way shy of the British record of 2.37m he equalled in Lausanne last year.
However, in qualifying the consistency appeared to be back, which Grabarz will be hoping to replicate come the final. As for assessing his year so far, he simply said: "It's been a crap season really but I've had to be patient and we'll see what happens on Thursday."
Most major championships tend to throw up a surprise medal for Britain, which is exactly what England's silver was in Daegu, the Oxford athlete producing a stunning burst in the home straight on that occasion.
In her semi-final, she was boxed in and was lucky the field opened up to allow her through to one of the fastest loser spots. England has always said "anything can happen in a 1500m final". Such is her experience and the unpredictability of middle-distance running, the field is wide open.
Coming up today: Moscow highlights
6.55am BST Women's 800m heats (M Okoro, J Judd, L Muir)
7.55am Women's 200m heats (A Onuora, J Williams)
4pm Men's high jump final (R Grabarz)
4.05pm Men's 4x400m relay heats (Great Britain & Northern Ireland)
4.45pm Women's 200m semi-finals
5.20pm Men's 3,000m steeplechase
5.45pm Women's 400m hurdles final (P Shakes-Drayton, E Child)
6pm Men's 400m hurdles final (F Sanchez)
6.20pm Women's 1500m final (H England)
Latest in Sport
Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?
WWE Raw results: Brock Lesnar suspended for post-Wrestlemania 31 rampage after losing title to Seth Rollins
Chelsea's best XI of the season so far: Petr Cech has been better than Thibaut Courtois
WrestleMania 31: The Undertaker begins a new streak after tombstoning Bray Wyatt
Louis van Gaal: Manchester United boss reveals that being a 'slow player' made him a better manager on warts and all documentary
- 1 Tidal launch: The most pretentious lines from Alicia Keys' valedictory speech
- 2 Trevor Noah: Jon Stewart's replacement faces online criticism over 'anti-Semitic' tweets
- 3 Martha Stewart accuses Snoop Dogg of 'smoking for four hours' during Justin Bieber Roast
- 4 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
- 5 Syrian child photographed 'surrendering to camera because she thought it was a gun'
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
Revealed: Putin's army of pro-Kremlin bloggers
£22500 - £30000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Sthree are looking for experie...
£16575 - £18785 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Dundee based butchers requ...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: To effectively manage a team which is responsi...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A rare and exciting role has arisen within thi...