Mitchell Watt (Qld) finished second in the long jump while Jarrod Bannister (Qld) took fourth in the javelin, in the final Samsung Diamond League event before the Olympic Games.
With perfect conditions in Monaco, reigning Olympic champion Irving Saladino (PAN) put early pressure on the field with an opening season’s best of 8.16 (-0.2).
And while Watt ran through his opening jump he followed up with 8.08 (-0.4) to leap into second place. It was a mark he would not better until his final jump of 8.12 (+0.1) which secured his second place.
Chris Tomlinson (GBR) and Godfrey Mokoena (RSA), who both pushed Watt at the London Diamond League last Friday, finished third and last with 8.01 (+0.7) and 7.75 (-0.1) respectively.
Watt said: “I’m definitely not disappointed, that’s exactly why I came here tonight, to iron those things out and pick up a couple of diamond league points.
“I’ve won three competitions and come second in one in my international prep, which I definitely would’ve taken six months ago especially when I was hardly touching a track back then, so I’m extremely happy with where I am right now.”
Competing at almost the same time as Watt, Bannister threw a series of high 70m marks in all but the third round but it was his final effort of 81.19m which sealed fourth.
Ukraine’s Oleksandr Pyatnytsya won his second successive Diamond League competition with a final throw of 82.25m while Olympic silver medallist Vadims Vasilevskis (LAT) took second with 81.90m.
Bannister said: “The last round was pretty promising, I started to get a bit of rhythm. So I’ll just go back and work on my run up. There’s plenty more there it’s just putting that last bit of the puzzle together before London.
“Anyone that knows me knows that if I put it together it’s going to go to my PB (Personal Best) or maybe further, who knows. I’m pretty confident that if I get one even close to right it should go to 87m. I’m hoping around the 87m plus range for the Olympics.”
The sole Australian representative on the track at the Herculis meet was Beijing finalist Youcef Abdi (NSW) who was 10th in the 3000mSC in 8:32.86. Conselus Kipruto (KEN) won the event in a personal best of 8:03.49.
Abdi said: “Coming into this race I was expecting to run much faster, it didn’t happen, but it’s okay I’m not losing track because my main focus is London. I’m in good shape so I just need to stay focused on my main goal, which is London.
In other Diamond League results:
- USA red, comprising of Trell Kimmons, Justin Gatlin, Tyson Gay and Ryan Bailey, set a world-lead when they won the 4x100m in 37.61
- Sandra Perkovic (CRO) won the discus with her opener of 65.29 while reigning Olympic champion Stephanie Brown-Trafton (USA) finished fourth with 63.70
- Zuzana Hejnova (CZE) win’s the 400mH with a season’s best of 54.12 ahead of Lashinda Demus (USA) in 54.26 and Melaine Walker (JAM) who also clocked a season’s best of 54.44
- Asbel Kiprop (KEN) showed he’s in ominous form ahead of defending his Olympic title when he won the 1500m in a world lead of 3:28.88. While Nick Willis (NZL) took Ryan Gregson’s (NSW) Oceania record when he crossed the line in 3:30.35.
- Silke Spiegelburg (GER) set a world lead and national record of 4.82m in the pole vault. While Yelena Isinbayeva (RUS) entered at 4.70m but failed to register a height.
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