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world youths (4)

Chijindu Ujah
Chjindu Ujah

07 July 2011

Aviva Great Britain and Northern Ireland team sprinter Chijindu Ujah (Edwin Stephens) took part in a down-to-the-wire 100m final at the 2011 World Youth Championships in Lille, France; the Enfield & Haringey athlete lined up at the start alongside Jamaica's O'Dail Todd and local favourite Michael-Meba Zeze, finishing eighth with a time of 10.69s.

Todd won the race with a new PB of 10.51s, followed by Japan's Kazuma Oseto and Zeze, with both the battles for the win and for third place resorting to photo-finish.

The event closed a second day of action that brought great performances for the Aviva GB & NI team, such as Hayley McLean's brave effort to qualify to the final of the 400m hurdles in a new PB time and Jessica Judd (Jeremy Freeman) and Katie Snowden's (James McDonald) double qualification in the 800m earlier in the morning session.

Ujah, who looked in discomfort after the 100m final and was left to the care of the team doctor, had qualified to the event earlier in the afternoon in an incredibly level and tense semi-final which saw four runners divided by only the smallest of margins on the line. Only photo-finish could assign second positon to the British sprinter, who was listed with the same time as third placed Andre Azonwanna of Canada (10.88s), in what could only be described as a race boasting a frighteningly competitive field.

The other British athletes involved in this afternoon's session produced some strong results and achieved some of their lifetimes' best performances, which unfortunately did not translate into places in further rounds of the competition.

After yesterday's 47.82s new 400m personal best, Alex Boyce (Stan Roberts) found himself in a really competitive semi-final. With the USA's Arman Hall setting the second fastest time of all the field with a stunning 46.70s, and three other athletes setting new personal bests, the frame was set for a very fast race. In such a tough group, Boyce finished a creditable fifth with a final time of 47.96s, his third best performance ever.

Yasmin Miller (Jared Deacon) came into the 100m hurdles semi-finals as the fifth best time from the heats. Her start in the third and last semi-final was very good and by the 50m point Miller seemed at ease with herself and on course to qualify. Unfortunately, a clipped hurdle saw her lose crucial momentum, meaning she finished in fifth position in 14.25s, unfortunately out of the qualification spots for tonight's final.

The two British 800m runners involved in today's semi-finals were faced with a formidable field including Ethiopia's Mohammed Aman - in the same line up as Elliot Slade (Arwyn Davies) - who produced the World's leading performance only one month ago. Such was the quality of the field that Aman himself had to bow to Kenya's Leonard Kirwa Kosencha, who set a new Championship Record with a time of 1:47.11.

Early leaders Kosencha and Aman set off at an impressive pace and reached the 400m mark with already a massive advantage over the athletes in pursuits, but Cardiff AAC athlete Slade put in one of his trademark strong finishes to help him see off Sweden's Andreas Almgren and Poland's Patryk Wrobel and clinch fifth position on the line, his time of 1:52.25 matching his time in the heats.

William Gurton (Nicholas Taylor) managed not to lose contact with a group that refused to stretch until the final 100m in his event, and finished in seventh position in his 800m heat with a time of 1:52.42, improving his time from the heats and setting his third best performance ever in a race won by Qatar's Hamza Driouch.

Full results can be found on the IAAF website.