20th July 2017
Brits set to finalise London form in Monaco
A mere two weeks out from the IAAF World Championships in London, ten Britons will finalise their preparations at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Monaco tonight (July 21), as the Herculis International meeting stages the eleventh leg of the global athletics series.
An impressive winner in the 100m in Rabat on Sunday, Chijindu Ujah (coach: Stuart McMillian) will look to improve his fine 9.98 season’s best set in the Moroccan capital, as he faces world record holder and eight-time Olympic and eleven-time world champion, Usain Bolt.
The Jamaican has a best of 10.03 this summer, whereas 23-year-old Ujah has notched up additional victories in Rome and London – the 2013 European junior champion could well improve his 9.96 lifetime best here, as he heads into a home world championships in superb form.
In the 3,000m, European indoor 1500m and 3,000m champion, Laura Muir (Andy Young) faces her fierce rival, Hellen Obiri – the Olympic 5,000m silver medallist and 2012 world indoor 3,000m champion of Kenya.
Following a swift 1:58.69 800m personal best in Lausanne and a 4:18.03 mile best behind Obiri in London, 24-year-old Muir will be aiming for a victorious final flourish before the global championships on British turf, where she will compete in both the 1500m and 5,000m.
British 5,000m champion, Steph Twell (Mick Woods) is enjoying a positive campaign including a 4:25.39 mile best in London and a 32:16.23 10,000m debut back in May, and the 27-year-old European 5,000m bronze medallist will be joined by her London 5,000m team-mate, Eilish McColgan (Liz Nuttall).
The 26-year-old European indoor 3,000m bronze medallist returns from injury in a season which has seen her run 15:07.43 and 32:10.59 for 5,000m and 10,000m, respectively.
Fresh from his surprise win in London, Chris O’Hare (Terrance Mahon) takes on the metric mile against a loaded field including Kenya’s 3:30.77 man and Lausanne winner, Timothy Cheruiyot and his countryman, three-time world champion and 2008 Olympic champion, Asbel Kiprop.
The British champion, 26, also boasts a 1:47.34 800m and 3:34.35 1500m personal best recorded this summer, and the 2014 European champion enters the competition in high confidence.
Having registered a grand 1.96m British junior record to win the British championships earlier this month, Morgan Lake (Aston Moore) starts in the high jump, following two fourth-place finishes in Rome and Lausanne.
The 20-year-old 2014 world junior champion and 2016 Olympic finalist will hope to be inspired by world champion and the winner in Eugene, Rome, Stockholm, Lausanne and London, Mariya Lasitskene who has cleared a stunning 2.06m this summer.
Gradually finding her form as the season progresses, Lynsey Sharp (Terrance Mahon) will be looking to improve on her seventh and fourth place 800m finishes in Lausanne and London, respectively.
The 27-year-old 2014 European champion has a 2017 best of 1:58.80 and she will undoubtedly find herself battling a re-hot pace, as South Africa’s two-time Olympic and world champion, Caster Semenya – the winner in Doha, Eugene and Oslo and with a season’s best of 1:56.61 – clashes with world indoor champion and Stockholm and Lausanne victor, Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi.
Continuing her return from injury, European champion Dina Asher-Smith (John Blackie) contests her second 200m of the summer, following a recent 23.15 clocking.
The 21-year-old will participate in the half-lap event in London and this encounter will provide a decent dress rehearsal, with the USA’s NCAA champion and 22.02 runner, Kyra Jefferson and Olympic 100m and 200m fourth-placer, Marie-Josee Ta Lou of the Ivory Coast also starting.
In the non-Diamond League 400m hurdles event, Eilidh Doyle (Brian Doyle) will be hoping to consolidate her third, fourth and third place finishes in Lausanne, London and Rabat, respectively, as the 30-year-old 2014 European champion edges closer to her 54.09 lifetime best.
The British champion faces world silver medallist and recent 52.75 runner, Shamier Little of the USA and her team-mate, Ashley Spencer – the Olympic bronze medallist and winner in Eugene and Lausanne.
In another non-scoring discipline, Elliot Giles (Jon Bigg) goes in the 800m, having registered a 1:44.99 personal best in London for fifth position.
The 23-year-old European bronze medallist and British champion will join Kenya’s 1:43.73 man and NCAA indoor and outdoor champion, Emmanuel Korir and the USA’s world indoor bronze medallist, Erik Sowinski.