13th May 2022
FOUR BRITS BEGIN 2022 DIAMOND LEAGUE CAMPAIGN IN DOHA
Four British athletes were in action at the opening fixture of the 2022 Wanda Diamond League in Doha, Qatar.
Dina Asher-Smith (coach: John Blackie, club: Blackheath and Bromley) and Beth Dobbin (Leon Baptiste, Edinburgh) opened their seasons over the 200m distance with third and sixth place respectively.
Asher-Smith ran a strong bend and entered the home straight alongside Olympic medallists Gabrielle Thomas (USA) and Shericka Jackson, but the latter both kicked on in the final 100m to finish first and second respectively in times of 21.98 (+1.3) and 22.07 – Thomas’ time was an equal meeting record. Asher-Smith clocked 22.37, while Dobbin crossed the line in 23.06.
Daniel Rowden (Matt Yates, Woodford Green Essex Ladies) fought well in the men’s 800m to finish fourth overall. The Briton placed himself in contention at the bell and remained patient as Noah Kibet (KEN) took to the head of the field and the pack became bunched.
As Balla and Hassan faded directly behind Kibet, Rowden went with Marco Arop (CAN) around the pair on the final bend with a top three placing in his sights. A fast-finishing Peter Bol (AUS) usurped the Briton in the sprint to the line, but it was a solid fourth position for Rowden who posted 1:49.56 ahead of reigning world champion Donavon Brazier (USA) and Olympic silver medallist Ferguson Cheruiyot Rotich (KEN). Kibet won in 1:49.08.
In a competition where the strong winds were playing a huge role, Naomi Metzger (Aston Moore, Trafford) finished eighth in the women’s triple jump with a wind-assisted jump of 14.24m (+4.7), the best of her series. All four of her marks were assisted by the strong tailwind which was the same across the field. The competition was won by Jamaica’s Shanieka Ricketts with a best of 14.82m (+6.5).