Heartbreak for Team GB's Holly Bleasdale after pole vault disappointment

 

Holly Bleasdale's hopes for an Olympic pole vault medal ended in bitter disappointment as nerves appeared to get the better of her on the big stage.

The 20-year-old from Lancashire was on the verge of tears as she failed her third and final attempt at 4.55 metres, well below her best this summer of 4.71m.

She looked nervous as soon as she was introduced to the crowd and almost went out at 4.45m, needing three attempts to clear her opening height.

The 20-year-old from Lancashire was on the verge of tears as she failed her third and final attempt at 4.55m, well below her best this summer of 4.71m.

She looked nervous as soon as she was introduced to the crowd and almost went out at 4.45m, needing three attempts to clear her opening height.

Bleasdale was clearly fired up, punching the air with relief and delight when she finally cleared 4.45m.

But she was unable to steady herself from there, bailing out on her second attempt at the next height.

She said: "The conditions weren't great, it was really bad headwind.

"I'm really disappointed with how I did.

"I felt like I could have jumped around 4.70m but I struggled to cope with the conditions.

"I am trying to look at the positives and to finish in the top eight in my first Olympic final is pretty good, but I am just heartbroken with how it went today.

"I am only 20 and I feel like I could have performed well this year."

There was relief for Perri Shakes-Drayton in the 400m hurdles as she just made it through to the final as a fastest loser.

The east Londoner, joint second in the world rankings, clocked 55.19 seconds to finish third in her heat and it looked like that time would not be good enough only for a disqualification to send her through.

Eilidh Child went out, finishing seventh in 56.03secs.

Shakes-Drayton said: "I'm through, it's a bit emotional because I thought I was out. I've got a day's rest, and hopefully [I can] redeem myself and do something."

Child said: "My stride pattern didn't go to plan. I am gutted I never left it on the track. I have come off thinking I could have done a lot better.

"I got my strides wrong at hurdle three and from then on I was just trying to get it back."

Belarus' Nadzeya Ostapchuk won the first gold medal of the night, throwing 21.36m to become Olympic shot put champion.

The 31-year-old took the title from New Zealand's Valerie Adams, who had to settle for silver in 20.70m.

Russian Evgeniia Kolodko took the bronze with 20.48m.

PA

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence