Menkov steals limelight

Russian's leap of 8.39M the best effort in two years

Menkov steals limelight

Russia’s Aleksandr Menkov was the star on the opening night of the Prefontaine Classic Diamond League meeting on Friday when he won the long jump with a leap of 8.39 metres, the best in almost two years.

The 2013 European Athletics Indoor Championships winner added eight centimetres to his personal best and took the lead in the Diamond race after two of seven meetings.

Menkov fouled his first two attempts before reaching 8.11M in the third round, although he was behind Brazil’s 2012 IAAF World Indoor Championships Mauro Da Silva who had jumped 8.14M just before him.

Another foul followed in the fourth round before he produced his massive winning effort.

Germany’s Christina Obergfoll kept her unbeaten streak on US soil in women’s javelin, winning in a new meeting record of 67.70M.

The former European record holder, who has won silver medals at five major championships but never gold, also moved up to second in this year’s world lists and leads the Diamond Race with eight points after two of the seven meetings in her event.

“I am really satisfied with today’s result,” said Obergfoll. “We had pretty strong headwinds, which is actually not so good. I like more of a tailwind. The other girls threw it pretty high which is a problem when you have a headwind. Yes, I am the lucky one.”

New Zealand shot putter Valerie Adams has been unbeaten since August 2010 but it looked like that streak might come to an endafter China’s Lijiao Gong took the lead in the third round with a 20.12M effort.

On her fifth throw the giant New Zealander reached 20.15m to edge back in front and eventually clinch the gold.

Ethiopia’s world record holder and two-time Olympic 10000M champion Kenenisa Bekele won the men’s 10000M that was shorn of some colour thanks to the withdrawal of Olympic champion Mo Farah.

Bekele held off Deriba Merga, winning in a world leading 27:12.08 just 0.29 seconds ahead of the 2011 World Cross Country Championships gold medallist and man who also took the silver medal at the event in Bydgoszcz, Poland, back in March.
Germany’s world record holder Betty Heidler of Germany won the women’s hammer competition with a throw of 75.21M.

Results: Men: 10000M: Kenenisa Bekele (Ethiopia) 27:12.08, 1; Imane Merga (Ethiopia) 27:12.37, 2; Abera Kuma (Ethiopia) 27:13.10, 3. Long jump: Aleksandr Menkov (Russia) 8.39 metres, 1; Mauro Vinicius da Silva (Brazil) 8.22, 2; Greg Rutherford (Britain) 8.22, 3. Women: Shot put: Valerie Adams (New Zealand) 20.15 metres, 1; Gong Lijiao (Chn) 20.12, 2. Michelle Carter (US) 19.65, 3. Hammer throw: Betty Heidler (Germany) 75.21 metres, 1; Anita Wlodarczyk (Poland) 74.73, 2; Tatyana Lysenko (Russia) 72.62, 3. Javelin throw: Christina Obergfoell (Germany) 67.70 metres, 2; Kimberley Mickle (Australia) 63.80, 2; Sunette Viljoen (South Africa) 63.00, 3.

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