Pistorius last, Semenya second

2011-06-05 10:19

Geneva - It was a disappointing day for two high profile South African athletes on Saturday at the Prefontaine Diamond League athletics meeting.

"Blade Runner" Oscar Pistorius, the amputee athlete trying to qualify for the World Championships, was last in the 400m won by Angelo Taylor.

Caster Semenya, whose 800m triumph at the 2009 World Championships was followed by a gender controversy, finished second in the women's 800m.

She closed from eighth to second on the final lap, but left herself too much to do and couldn't threaten race winner Kenia Sinclaire of Kenya, who won in a world leading time of 1:58.29.

Botswana's Amantle Montsho pulled off the upset in the women's 400m, winning in 50.59 in a race in which US star Allyson Felix was relegated to third in 51.41 behind compatriot Debbie Dunn (51.37).

David Oliver avenged his loss last month to Liu Xiang and Steve Mullings delivered another stellar 100m performance.

Oliver won the 110m hurdles in a blazing 12.94sec to edge Liu, China's former world record-holder who had stopped the American's 20-win streak at the Shanghai Diamond League meeting on May 15.

Oliver's time was the fastest in the world in this World Championships season, improving on the 13.07 previously posted by both Liu and Cuban Dayron Robles.

Jamaica's Mullings won the 100m in a sizzling 9.80sec.

In another explosive sprint performance, American Carmelita Jeter won the women's 100m in a world-leading 10.70sec.

Mullings came into the meeting with a world leading 9.89, set at a low-key meeting in Clermont, Florida, last month.

His American training partner Tyson Gay reportedly bettered that at another meeting in Clermont on Saturday, running a 9.79 according to the Orlando Sentinel newspaper.

Mullings credited Gay with helping him define his focus and improve his times this year.

"I just figured out how to do it," he said. "The last couple of years I always rushed my first third. Now I'm more patient."

Mullings admitted that he was exhausted after flying in from Europe just days before.

"My body's ripped up right now, I'm hurting," Mullings said. "I'm hurting bad. I was a little bit jet-lagged. I expected to get in the 80s, but I didn't expect to go 9.8. It was a great feeling."

American Michael Rodgers was second in 9.85 and fellow Jamaican Nesta Carter third in 9.92 in a race run in a wind of 1.3m/sec.

Former Olympic and world champion Justin Gatlin, returning to the meeting after serving a four-year doping ban, finished sixth in 9.97.

He said he came up early in his drive because of tightness in his quadriceps, an ailment he has been having treated.

However, Gatlin said his sights remained firmly on booking a World Championships berth at the US trials here later this month.

"I have a big heart, a big appetite for competition," Gatlin said. "That's my goal right now, to make the world team."

Liu, trying to regain his 110m hurdles dominance after an Achilles injury battle that scuppered his 2008 Beijing Olympics bid, led Oliver to the first hurdle by the barest of margins.

But the big American had powered past by the third hurdle en route to a blistering early-season time in a race run with a wind of 1.8m/sec.

Liu, who had ended Oliver's 20-race winning streak in the event at the Shanghai Diamond League meeting on May 15, was second 13.00. American Aries Merritt was third in 13.18.

"I'm just happy for a good performance," said Oliver, adding that he knew from the opening strides that he was in a good rhythm.

"I took care of business at the start – like I didn't do in Shanghai."

Liu wasn't happy with technical flaws at the end of his race, but pronounced himself "very happy" with the time.

"I feel very good for the timing," he said, but added: "Close to the finish my speed and power were not good."

For Jeter, controlling her race was more important than the time.

"You know, I just wanted to execute a good race. I wanted to put a good race together," Jeter said. "Last couple of races I was running other people's races and not my race, but today I wanted to come out and run Carmelita's race."

Marshevet Myers was second in 10.86 and Jamaican Kerron Stewart third in 10.87.

Shelly-Ann Fraser, who has been nursing a sore back, was fourth in 10.95.


Men's 400m

1. Angelo Taylor (U.S.) 45.16
2. Jeremy Wariner (U.S.) 45.43
3. Kevin Borlee (Belgium) 45.51
8. Oscar Pistorius (South Africa) 46.33

Men's 800m

1. Abubaker Kaki (Sudan) 1:43.68
2. Khadevis Robinson (U.S.) 1:45.40
3. Boaz Kiplagat Lalang (Kenya) 1:45.49

Men's 110m Hurdles

1. David Oliver (U.S.) 12.94
2. Liu Xiang (China) 13.00
3. Aries Merritt (U.S.) 13.18

Men's 3000m Steeplechase

1. Ezekiel Kemboi (Kenya) 8:08.34
2. Paul Kipsiele Koech (Kenya) 8:10.13
3. Roba Gary (Ethiopia) 8:11.34
4. Ruben Ramolefi (South Africa) 8:24.95

Men's Discus Throw

1. Robert Harting (Germany) 68.40
2. Virgilijus Alekna (Lithuania) 67.19
3. Piotr Malachowski (Poland) 65.95

Women's 1500m

1. Gelete Burka (Ethiopia) 4:04.63
2. Maryam Yusuf Jamal (Bahrain) 4:05.44
3. Morgan Uceny (U.S.) 4:06.32

Women's 400m Hurdles

1. Lashinda Demus (U.S.) 53.31
2. Kaliese Spencer (Jamaica) 53.45
3. Melaine Walker (Jamaica) 53.56

Women's Pole Vault

1. Anna Rogowska (Poland) 4.68
2. Svetlana Feofanova (Russia) 4.58
3. Fabiana Murer (Brazil) 4.48

Women's Triple Jump

1. Olha Saladuha (Ukraine) 14.98
2. Blessing Ufodiama (U.S.) 14.06
3. Anna Pyatykh (Russia) 13.98

Women's Shot Put

1. Nadezhda Ostapchuk (Belarus) 20.59
2. Jillian Camarena-Williams (U.S.) 19.76
3. Cleopatra Borel-Brown (Trinidad and Tobago) 18.85

Women's Javelin Throw

1. Christina Obergfoell (Germany) 65.48
2. Maria Abakumova (Russia) 65.30
3. Barbora Spotakova (Czech Republic) 64.87
5. Sunette Viljoen (South Africa) 60.09


  • Kaapie - 2011-06-05 10:58

    What is soo disaapointing in caster's 2nd place by come 2/10 of a sec...

  • Anton - 2011-06-05 11:03

    It does not matter, Pistorius and Semenya., you don't have to win all the time. Both of you are such great South Africans. We are so proud of you.

  • Yoni - 2011-06-05 12:23

    Oscar has done well in getting lots of publicity for "disabled" athletes, and he is an extraordinary Paralimpian, but it is time he realise he cannot compete with two-legged athletes on the same footing.

      Valis - 2011-06-05 12:41

      Well, he doesn't have feet...

      Yoni - 2011-06-05 13:10

      Exactly! You explain that to him. Anyhow, he is in the interesting situation where he can qualify to run with "normal" athletes, but cannot really compete on the same level. Didn't Prof Tim Noakes find that he has an advantage because of his blades? Secondly, I believe he has an undeniable advantage over other paralympians, as most of them run with one leg and one blade, whilst Oscar has a blade on each stump. Most of his "disabled" competitors only lost a leg late in life whilst Oscar grew up with two artificial limbs. So, for his competitors having a leg and a blade must be tantamount to driving a car with different tyres sizes on each side.

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