IAAF World Championships

Title-holder Schippers coasts, Bowie a no show

2017-08-08 22:47
Dafne Schippers (File)

London - Defending world champion Dafne Schippers eased into the 200 metres semi-finals on Tuesday with her morale further boosted by the withdrawal of newly-crowned 100m champion Tori Bowie.

Bowie, who took Olympic bronze in the 200m last year, won the 100m gold with a sensational dip at the line which saw the American tumble to the ground.

The US Athletics Federation confirmed: "Tori Bowie has withdrawn from the 200 metres as she continues to recover from her fall at the conclusion of the women's 100m final.

"Her condition will continue to be evaluated to assess her readiness for the 4x100 relay."

Schippers produced a blistering first 150 metres coming off the bend several lengths ahead of the rest of the field.

The 25-year-old -- who took bronze in the 100m -- eased up long before the line to time 22.63sec.

"The medal in the 100m was a boost for me," said Schippers.

"I've recovered well from the 100m and am really looking forward to this event as it is my favoured one."

With Bowie gone Ivory Coast's Marie-Josee Ta Lou will also fancy her chances at winning the 200m title as consolation for being edged out of the 100m gold medal by the American.

Ta Lou -- diminutive by comparison to Schippers -- looked terrific in her heat coasting home to win easily.

The 29-year-old though was disappointed she would not have a chance of getting revenge on Bowie.

"I am quite surprised. I just hope it isn't a big problem," she said.

"I don't know why she did not line up.

"Maybe it was because she fell the other night on the dip but I have not heard anything."

However, despite Bowie's absence both of them will have to be wary of Bahamas Shaunae Miller-Uibo, who like South African male star Wayde van Niekerk is trying to do the 200m/400m double.

Miller-Uibo -- who will bid to add the world 400m title to her Olympic gold on Wednesday against American great Allyson Felix -- was also very impressive coming off the bend behind experienced Jamaican Simone Facey but upping a gear and effortlessly easing past her 32-year-old rival and cantered to the line glancing up at the big screen to reassure herself that none of her rivals were going to catch her.

In the absence of Bowie the United States chances of gold probably lie with American champion Deajah Stevens.

The 22-year-old Olympic finalist -- of whom much is expected -- powered home in her heat.

She was more than happy with her first round performance.

"I know my best part of the race is usually the last 50m so I can produce that when the time comes," she said.

"My confidence and motivation has been boosted by the performances of the likes of Torri and others on the team and I want to add to the tally."

Britain hasn't had much to celebrate at the championships but Dina Asher-Smith at least gave the nigh on 60,000 spectators something to cheer as the 21-year-old -- who was a kit bag carrier at the 2012 Olympics -- won her heat in good style.


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