Zürich Diamond League — Walsh Wins Amazing Shot Competition

Tom Walsh needed almost every inch of his 74-footer to turn back Darrell Hill & Ryan Crouser. (MARK SHEARMAN)

Zürich, Switzerland, August 30—Darrell Hill, the shock winner of last year’s Diamond League shot title in Brussels with a final-round PR of 73-7½ (22.44), made a mighty defense of his title at the Weltklasse meet with a season’s best of 73-6 (22.40). But this time round it was not enough to prevent Tom Walsh from earning the honors with a DL record 74-1¾ (22.60).

In last year’s final New Zealander Walsh and Hill’s American compatriot Ryan Crouser had to take the minor placings in the Place de la Monnaie, which saw an inspired Hill earn himself $50,000 worth of money. Fast forward a year and Crouser took the early lead thanks to a first-round 72-6½ (22.11). But Hill was at it again as he established a second-round lead with a season’s best of 72-11¼ (22.23), just the second 72-footer of his career. This time, however, world champion Walsh wrenched the initiative straight back with his 74-footer. Game on.

Hill, for whom DL finals clearly work very well, pushed on again with his best of 73-6 (22.40). That was only enough to consolidate his position, while Crouser edged upwards with 72-9¼ (22.18) in the following sequence.

This was only the second competition in history with three beyond 22.00 (72-2¼). The other was way back in ’86. With Darlan Romani of Brazil ending up at 71-11¾ (21.94) and Czech Tomáš Staněk reaching 71-9 (21.87), the event featured the best marks ever for places 2–5.

“I am so happy,” said Walsh, whose PR of 74-4½ (22.67) set in Auckland in March this year has him at =No. 6 on the all-time list. “Things went so well for me. Two years ago I won the Diamond League here. It was a tough competition today but the result was so great.”

On a cool but thankfully dry evening that was all about racing rather than timing, there was no more deserving winner of the 16 Diamond Trophies handed out by IAAF President Seb Coe, and their accompanying checks for $50,000.

A capacity crowd of 25,000 had first come alive as the final lap of the steeplechase played itself out in dramatic fashion, with Conseslus Kipruto eventually finding a way past Morocco’s 22-year-old world silver medalist Soufiane El Bakkali in the final 30m after clearing the last hurdle marginally behind.

Kipruto has proven himself over and again as a competitor, winning Olympic gold and beating El Bakkali to last year’s world title, but he has surely never faced such a challenge as this. “I have big pain,” he said after finishing a stride ahead in 8:10.15, with his taller opponent dropping, exhausted, to the track after clocking 8:10.19. “I am injured because I lost my left shoe. That was a mess. But it motivated me to fight as hard as I could, so the race went well.”
American Evan Jager took 3rd in 8:13.22 having led 5 through the bell as excitement in the stadium had begun to gather.

The women’s 5000 produced another classic head-to-head sprint finish, with Hellen Obiri eventually retaining her title despite huge pressure from Sifan Hassan—who then faced a drive through the night to get to Belgium and the Van Damme 1500, as, for the first time, the first DL Final preceded the second one by just 24 hours.

Six women, including Obiri, Hassan and Ethiopia’s Senbere Teferi and 1500 WR holder Genzebe Dibaba, had reached the bell together—and with drama imminent. Hassan made her break in the back straight, floating to the lead, but very soon the smaller, dogged figure of Obiri, the world champion, had moved past her.

As the pair reached the straight Hassan, an emphatic winner of the European title earlier this month, moved wide for another challenge—but Obiri, serenely confident beforehand, simply wasn’t having it, as she crossed in 14:38.39, with Hassan (14:38.77) and Teferi (14:40.97) following. “Before the race I felt I would win—finally everything came together, and I am proud,” said Obiri.

In the absence of world champ Johannes Vetter, Germany’s Olympic gold medalist Thomas Röhler, who beat his friend Andreas Hofmann to the European title earlier in the month, was the favorite—but on the night he, like the rest of the field, could not respond to “Third Man” Hofmann’s mighty third-round effort of 300-0 (91.44), just 2ft shy of his PR.

That took and retained the lead in a competition that was first headed by India’s Neeraj Chopra, with 281-3 (85.73). But the Indian thrower eventually finished 4th as Estonia’s Magnus Kirt took 2nd with 287-3 (87.57), and Röhler found enough form to reach 281-4 (85.76).

“Yesterday I said that 90m [295-3] was still possible because I was still in good shape,” said Hofmann. “In Birmingham I threw nearly 90m. I guess I gave 100–110%. When the javelin was gone I knew it would fly far but I did not dream of 91m. My summary of the season—two Diamond League wins, winning the Diamond League trophy, a new personal best, and four times over 90m. A really excellent season!”

Another Sterling 200 For Lyles

Noah Lyles retained his 200 title in the kind of easy style we have come to expect, gliding clear of world champ Ramil Guliyev over the final 50m before crossing in 19.67sec, with the Turk clocking 19.98. It was the American’s fourth sub-19.7 of the year, a total only amassed previously in one campaign by Usain Bolt. “I came here to go for the win,” said Lyles. “I am very happy. I got out of the blocks reasonably well. I will go on with my training to make it even better.”

World champ Ramil Guliyev was no match for young Noah Lyles in the 200. (MARK SHEARMAN)

In the absence of Cuba’s boy wonder Juan Miguel Echevarría—rumored to be injured—world champ Luvo Manyonga defended his long jump title with 27-5¼ (8.36), with fellow South African Ruswahl Samaai 2nd, 4cm back.

As so often in the past 4 years, Katerína Stefanídi found the way to win her vault competition. Greece’s Olympic and world champion won with a first time clearance of 15-11¾ (4.87), with her only remaining rival, American Sandi Morris, finishing second on the countback from Anzhelika Sidorova after both had cleared 15-9¾ (4.82).

Morris, after an initial failure at 15-11¾ (4.87) herself, passed to 16-1¾ (4.92) after Stefanídi had cleared. It was down to the world indoor champion against the world outdoor champion, and the order remained as neither was able to clear. But Morris gained a more valuable diamond on the night as boyfriend Tyrone Smith, an Olympic long jumper for Bermuda, turned up unexpectedly and proposed to her after her competition.

Double world champion Mariya Lasitskene had one of her less arduous victories as she was able to retain her high jump title by clearing 6-5½ (1.97), which proved beyond the rest of the field. “This victory was very important to me—yet it was not a great result,” said Lasitskene.”

Caterine Ibargüen, Colombia’s Olympic gold medalist, regained her TJ title—although there was almost another upset to match the one that occurred here in this event last year as she ended up only a centimeter clear of Jamaica’s Shanieka Ricketts with her best of 47-9¼ (14.56).

Tatsiana Khaladovich of Belarus won the women’s javelin with a fifth-round effort of 219-9 (66.99) that took over the lead from China’s Shiying Liu 216-6 (66.00). Third went to Kara Winger, who reached a season’s best of 212-5 (64.75), the =No. 6 throw in U.S. history.

Britain’s European 100/200 victor Dina Asher-Smith finished powerfully to edge her way past Marie-Josée Ta Lou, the Ivorian with whom she shares the fastest time of the year, 10.85, but neither was able to resist the other Ivory Coaster in the field, Murielle Ahouré, who got away to the kind of start one would expect of a world indoor champion and maintained her form to the line to register the first surprising victory of the night in 11.01. Asher-Smith clocked 11.08, with Ta Lou at 11.10.

For world champion Karsten Warholm, beaten to last year’s 400H title by a final surge from Kyron McMaster, history repeated itself as he was caught over the final 30m, with the British Virgin Islander winning in 48.08 and the Norwegian just 0.02 behind.

On the women’s side, Dalilah Muhammad retained the women’s long hurdle title with a committed run, winning in 53.88 from compatriot Shamier Little (54.21), and Jamaica’s Janieve Russell, whose late run past Georganne Moline prevented a U.S. sweep.

A men’s 1500 unfortunately lacking the presence of Norway’s 17-year-old European 1500/5000 champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen, who was reportedly unwell with a sore throat, was won in emphatic style by the Kenyan who has dominated the distance this season, Timothy Cheruiyot. After his training partner Elijah Manangoi, who beat him to the world title last summer, had led through the bell, Cheruiyot made his challenge around the final bend and moved clear in the final straight to collect the spoils in 3:30.27.

Manangoi looked as if he would be overtaken in the final meters by Djibouti’s Ayanleh Souleiman, but found the strength to retain second place in 3:31.16, with Souleiman finishing 3rd in 3:31.24, 0.35 ahead of Morocco’s Abdelaati Iguider.

Caster Semenya ran the race she felt, without pacemakers, just the way she likes it—and she obviously felt good despite having had such a long season that began with a Commonwealth Games win in April as she took route one once again and pushed to the line for a winning time of 1.55.27. Ajee’ Wilson (1:57.86) and Natoya Goule (1:58.49) followed.

Fred Kerley won the honors in the men’s 400, powering home in 44.80 ahead of fellow American Nathan Strother, (44.93) and Britain’s Matthew Hudson-Smith (44.95).


ZÜRICH DL MEN’S RESULTS

Weltklasse; Zürich, Switzerland August 30 (attendance 25,000)—

200(-0.2): 1. Noah Lyles (US) 19.67 (x, 10 A) (fourth sub-19.7 of the year, tieing Bolt);

2. Ramil Guliyev (Tur) 19.98; 3. Jereem Richards (Tri) 20.04; 4. Aaron Brown (Can) 20.14; 5. Alex Quiñonez (Ecu) 20.34; 6. Alex Wilson (Swi) 20.40; 7. Luxolo Adams (SA) 20.51; 8. Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake (GB) 20.53.

400: 1. Fred Kerley (US) 44.80; 2. Nathan Strother (US) 44.93; 3. Matthew Hudson-Smith (GB) 44.95; 4. Paul Dedewo (US) 45.18; 5. Baboloki Thebe (Bot) 45.41; 6. Luguelín Santos (DR) 46.17; 7. Pieter Conradie (SA) 47.37;… dnf—Steven Gardiner (Bah).

1500: 1. Timothy Cheruiyot (Ken) 3:30.27 (2:50.02); 2. Elijah Manangoi (Ken) 3:31.16; 3. Ayanleh Souleiman (Dji) 3:31.24; 4. Abdelaati Iguider (Mor) 3:31.59; 5. Brahim Kaazouzi (Mor) 3:33.82; 6. Aman Wote (Eth) 3:34.05; 7. Filip Ingebrigtsen (Nor) 3:34.13; 8. Samuel Tefera (Eth) 3:37.49; 9. Bethwel Birgen (Ken) 3:38.76; 10. Ryan Gregson (Aus) 3:39.04; 11. Charlie Da’Vall Grice (GB) 3:40.06; 12. Taresa Tolosa (Eth) 3:45.45;… rabbit—Jackson Kivuva (Ken) 54.71, 1:52.27.

St: 1. Conseslus Kipruto (Ken) 8:10.15; 2. Soufiane El Bakkali (Mor) 8:10.19; 3. Evan Jager (US) 8:13.22; 4. Chala Beyo (Eth) 8:15.85; 5. Nicholas Bett (Ken) 8:19.74 (5:33.18); 6. Abraham Kibiwot (Ken) 8:23.60; 7. Hillary Bor (US) 8:26.04; 8. Leonard Bett (Ken) 8:27.18; 9. Benjamin Kigen (Ken) 8:27.33; 10. Kennedy Njiru (Ken) 8:28.68; 11. Matt Hughes (Can) 8:36.69; 12. Amos Kirui (Ken) 8:38.96;… rabbit—Lawrence Kemboi (Ken) (2:37.33).

Non-DL 110H(-0.6): 1. Jason Joseph (Swi) 13.46.

400H: 1. Kyron McMaster (BVI) 48.08; 2. Karsten Warholm (Nor) 48.10; 3. Yasmani Copello (Tur) 48.73; 4. Rasmus Mägi (Est) 49.28; 5. Cornel Fredericks (SA) 49.96; 6. José Reynaldo Bencosme (Ita) 50.01; 7. Bershawn Jackson (US) 50.63; 8. TJ Holmes (US) 51.39.

Field Events

Non-DL PV (in train station on 8/29): 1. Timur Morgunov (Rus) 19-4¾ (5.91) PR (18-2¾, 18-8¾, 19-¾, 19-2¾, 19-4¾ [3]) (5.56, 5.71, 5.81, 5.86, 5.91 [3]); 2. Shawn Barber (Can) 19-2¾ (5.86); 3. Kurtis Marschall (Aus) 19-2¾ PR; 4. Paweł Wojciechowski (Pol) 19-¾ (5.81); 5. tie, Renaud Lavillenie (Fra) & Piotr Lisek (Pol) 19-¾; 7. tie, Konstadínos Filippídis (Gre) & Sam Kendricks (US) 18-8¾ (5.71); 9. Thiago Braz (Bra) 18-2¾ (5.56).

LJ: 1. Luvo Manyonga (SA) 27-5¼ (8.36) (27-3¾, 26-9¾, 27-¾, 26-8¼, 27-5¼) (8.32, 8.17, 8.25, 8.13, 8.36); 2. Ruswahl Samaai (SA) 27-3¾ (8.32) (26-8¼, 27-2¾, 27-1¼, 27-3¾, f, 26-10½) (8.13, 8.30, 8.26, 8.32, f, 8.19); 3. Henry Frayne (Aus) 26-9¼ (8.16); 4. Tajay Gayle (Jam) 26-9 (8.15); 5. Jeffrey Henderson (US) 26-7¼ (8.11); 6. Marquis Dendy (US) 26-6½ (8.09); 7. Thobias Nilsson Montler (Swe) 26-1¾ (7.97); 8. Changzhou Huang (Chn) 26-¾ (7.94); 9. Benjamin Gföhler (Swi) 25-3¼ (7.70).

SP: 1. Tom Walsh (NZ) 74-1¾ (22.60) (69-1¼, 74-1¾, 70-2¼, 71-9, f, 67-5¼) (21.06, 22.60, 21.39, 21.87, f, 20.55); 2. Darrell Hill (US) 73-6 (22.40) (72-3½, 72-11¼, 73-6, f, 72-5¼, f) (22.03, 22.23, 22.40, f, 22.08, f); 3. Ryan Crouser (US) 72-9¼ (22.18) (72-6½, f, 70-9, 72-9¼, 71-5¼, f) (22.11, f, 21.56, 22.18, 21.77, f);

4. Darlan Romani (Bra) 71-11¾ (21.94) (71-11¾, f, 71-8, 71-8¼, 71-½, 71-2½) (21.94, f, 21.84, 21.85, 21.65, 21.70);

5. Tomáš Staněk (CzR) 71-9 (21.87) (69-11¾, 69-9¾, 71-9, f, f, 68-9¼) (21.33, 21.28, 21.87, f, f, 20.96); 6. David Storl (Ger) 69-11¾ (21.33); 7. Michał Haratyk (Pol) 69-8 (21.23); 8. Ryan Whiting (US) 67-5½ (20.56).

(best-ever mark-for-place: 2–5)

JT: 1. Andreas Hofmann (Ger) 300-0 (91.44) (266-1, 282-0, 300-0, f, 282-0) (81.10, 85.95, 91.44, f, 85.95); 2. Magnus Kirt (Est) 287-3 (87.57) (260-0, 287-3, 261-6, f, 257-0, f) (79.25, 87.57, 79.71, f, 78.34, f); 3. Thomas Röhler (Ger) 281-4 (85.76); 4. Neeraj Chopra (Ind) 281-3 (85.73); 5. Marcin Krukowski (Pol) 279-11 (85.32); 6. Julian Weber (Ger) 274-6 (83.68); 7. Jakub Vadlejch (CzR) 267-8 (81.58); 8. Gatis Čakšs (Lat) 256-4 (78.13).

ZÜRICH DL WOMEN’S RESULTS

100(-0.5): 1. Murielle Ahouré (CI) 11.01; 2. Dina Asher-Smith (GB) 11.08; 3. Marie Josée Ta Lou (CI) 11.10; 4. Mujinga Kambundji (Swi) 11.14; 5. Dafne Schippers (Neth) 11.15; 6. Michelle-Lee Ahye (Tri) 11.27; 7. Carina Horn (SA) 11.54;… dq—Blessing Okagbare (Ngr).

800: 1. Caster Semenya (SA) 1:55.27; 2. Ajee’ Wilson (US) 1:57.86; 3. Natoya Goule (Jam) 1:58.49; 4. Habitam Alemu (Eth) 1:58.63; 5. Raevyn Rogers (US) 1:59.05; 6. Francine Niyonsaba (Bur) 1:59.11; 7. Selina Büchel (Swi) 2:00.64; 8. Rabab Arrafi (Mor) 2:02.81; 9. Charlene Lipsey (US) 2:04.77.

5000: 1. Hellen Obiri (Ken) 14:38.39 (8:45.56); 2. Sifan Hassan (Neth) 14:38.77; 3. Senbere Teferi (Eth) 14:40.97; 4. Caroline Kipkirui (Ken) 14:43.96; 5. Agnes Tirop (Ken) 14:44.24 (11:47.17); 6. Genzebe Dibaba (Eth) 14:50.24; 7. Letesenbet Gidey (Eth) 14:57.52; 8. Lilian Rengeruk (Ken) 15:03.11; 9. Konstanze Klosterhalfen (Ger) 15:04.16; 10. Meraf Bahta (Swe) 15:08.17; 11. Eilish McColgan (GB) 15:09.00; 12. Meskerem Mamo (Eth) 15:20.56; 13. Melissa Courtney (GB) 15:24.58;… rabbits—Renata Plis (Pol) (2:53.05), Eva Cherono (Ken) (5:46.78).

400H: 1. Dalilah Muhammad (US) 53.88; 2. Shamier Little (US) 54.21; 3. Janieve Russell (Jam) 54.38; 4. Georganne Moline (US) 55.00; 5. Eilidh Doyle (GB) 55.05; 6. Léa Sprunger (Swi) 55.36; 7. Sage Watson (Can) 55.57; 8. Wenda Nel (SA) 57.23.

Non-DL 4 x 100: 1. Great Britain 42.28 (Asha Philip, Imani Lansiquot, Bianca Williams, Dina Asher-Smith); 2. Switzerland 42.49; 3. Germany 42.69; 4. Netherlands 43.28; 5. Italy 44.13; 6. Jamaica 44.16; 7. Spain 44.18.

Field Events

HJ: 1. Mariya Lasitskene (Rus) 6-5½ (1.97) (6-¾, 6-2¾, 6-4¼, 6-5½ [2], 6-6¾ [xxx]) (1.85, 1.90, 1.94, 1.97 [2], 2.00 [xxx]); 2. Yuliya Levchenko (Ukr) 6-4¼ (1.94); 3. Marie-Laurence Jungfleisch (Ger) 6-2¾ (1.90); 4. Erika Kinsey (Swe) 6-2¾; 5. tie, Oksana Okuneva (Ukr), Sofie Skoog (Swe), Levern Spencer (StL), Kateryna Tabashnyk (Ukr) & Elena Vallortigara (Ita) 6-¾ (1.85); 10. Alessia Trost (Ita) 6-¾; 11. Morgan Lake (GB) 6-¾.

PV: 1. Katerína Stefanídi (Gre) 15-11¾ (4.87) (15-3¾, 15-7¾ [2], 15-9¾, 15-11¾, 16-1¾ [xxx]) (4.67, 4.77 [2], 4.82, 4.87, 4.92 [xxx]); 2. Sandi Morris (US) 15-9¾ (4.82) (14-6, 15-0, 15-3¾, 15-7¾ [2], 15-9¾, 15-11¾ [x], 16-1¾ [xx]) (4.42, 4.57, 4.67, 4.77 [2], 4.82, 4.87 [x], 4.92 [xx]); 3. Anzhelika Sidorova (Rus) 15-9¾ (14-6, 15-0, 15-3¾, 15-7¾ [2], 15-9¾ [3], 15-11¾ [xxx]) (4.42, 4.57, 4.67, 4.77 [2], 4.82 [3], 4.87 [xxx]); 4. tie, Holly Bradshaw (GB) & Katie Nageotte (US) 15-0 (4.57); 6. Nikoléta Kiriakopoúlou (Gre) 15-0; 7. Ninon Guillon-Romarin (Fra) 15-0; 8. Angelica Moser (Swi) 14-6 (4.42); 9. Rosbeilys Peinado (Ven) 14-0 (4.27);… nh—Angelica Bengtsson (Swe), Olga Mullina (Rus), Lene Retzius (Nor).

TJ: 1. Caterine Ibargüen (Col) 47-9¼ (14.56) (46-2½, 47-9¼, 47-¾, 47-1¾, 47-4¼, f) (14.08, 14.56, 14.34, 14.37, 14.43, f);

2. Shanieka Ricketts (Jam) 47-9 (14.55) (46-6¾, 47-7¾, f, 47-3¾, 47-9, 47-5) (14.19, 14.52, f, 14.42, 14.55, 14.45); 3. Kim Williams (Jam) 47-5¾ (14.47); 4. Tori Franklin (US) 46-6 (14.17); 5. Rouguy Diallo (Fra) 46-5¼ (14.15); 6. Kristin Gierisch (Ger) 46-1½ (14.06); 7. Gabriela Petrova (Bul) 46-¾ (14.04);… nm—Ana Peleteiro (Spa).

JT: 1. Tatsiana Khaladovich (Blr) 219-9 (66.99) (f, 210-11, 209-10, 204-9, 206-2, 219-9) (f, 64.29, 63.96, 62.41, 62.85, 66.99);

2. Shiying Liu (Chn) 216-6 (66.00) (201-5, 211-8, 216-6, 207-0) (61.39, 64.53, 66.00, 63.10);

3. Kara Winger (US) 212-5 (64.75) (AL) (x, =6 A) (205-4, 203-2, 212-5, 197-7, 199-1, 203-3) (62.60, 61.94, 64.75, 60.23, 60.69, 61.95);

4. Huihui Lu (Chn) 208-5 (63.53); 5. Nikola Ogrodníková (CzR) 206-8 (62.99); 6. Martina Ratej (Slo) 199-8 (60.86); 7. Sigrid Borge (Nor) 195-5 (59.57). □