06 June, 2018

Sunshine and Fireworks forecast at Bislett

Tomorrow’s Bislett Games, the fifth 2018 IAAF Diamond league qualifying event, welcomes no less than 20 world champions and eight Olympic gold medallists. With the likely sunny and warm weather suiting both track and field a great evening of athletics is forecast.

World Champion and local favourite, Karsten Warholm will make his first home appearance since his incredible victory in London last August in the 400m hurdles. He will look to repeat last year’s win at Bislett where he set a new national record of 48.25.  But Qatar’s Abderrahman Samba is in scintillating form having gone under 48 seconds on each of his three appearances this season, the latest in Rome last week where he beat Warholm.  He leads the IAAF Diamond League qualification standings with 16 points. 

Kerron Clement and TJ Holmes of the USA and Turkey’s Yasmani Copello are likely to be in the mix, in a race that can change at the slight graze of a hurdle.

Men’s high jump

In the men’s high jump Mutaz Barshim and Danil Lysenko will renew their rivalry from the World Indoors in March where Lysenko took the gold medal.  Barshim, however, leads the IAAF Diamond League standings following his win in Eugene last month where he jumped 2.36m to beat Lysenko who cleared 2.32m.

Women’s 800m

The women’s 800m is likely to see Caster Semenya build on her Eugene victory.  Olympic silver medallist Francine Niyonsaba, Ethiopia’s Habitam Alemu and Briton’s Laura Muir will be her main challengers.  Muir, fresh from qualifying as a vet, ran a good 1500m in Eugene in her season opener and will be looking to sharpen her speed over the two-lap race.

3000m women’s steeplechase

In the 3000m women’s steeplechase a strong contingent of Kenyans is led by Hyvin Kiyeng who won in Rome last week in a world lead time of 9:04.96.  USA’s Emma Coburn and Courtney Frerichs, who were first and second in the World Championships in London, will be looking to break the Kenyan dominance again. Norway’s Karoline Bjerkeli who has a personal best of 9:13.35 will be looking for a good performance in front of her home crowd while Briton, Rosie Clark will want to build on her personal best of 9:32.08 set in Rome last week.

The Dream Mile

The famous Dream Mile, which will bring the evening to a close, is always a highlight and has, once again, attracted a quality field.  Briton, Jake Wightman will be looking to repeat last year’s surprise victory but will face tough competition from pre-race favourite, Elijah Motonei Manangoi of Kenya with the local brothers, Filip and Henrik Ingebrigtsen hoping the crowd’s support can give them the edge.

Men’s shot put

Out in the field there are some heavyweight clashes with New Zealand’s Tom Walsh, the 2017 World Champion up against Olympic Champion USA’s Ryan Crouser and Joe Covacs on the men’s shot put.  Crouser took the honours in Eugene with a season’s best throw of 22.53m.

Men’s discus

In the men’s discus Lithuania’s Andrius Gudzius, Jamaica’s Fedrick Dacres and Iran’s Ehsan Hadadi will renew their rivalry from Rome where Dacres took the eight IAAF Diamond League points with a throw of 68.51m.

Women’s pole vault

The women’s pole vault has a strong field with Olympic and World Champion Katerina Stefanidi facing Sandi Morris, the Indoor World Champion, who cleared 4.84m to win in Doha last month. 

Women’s javelin

China’s Huihui Lyu starts as favourite in the women’s javelin after throwing 67.69m in Halle and winning all eight IAAF Diamond League points in Shanghai.

Sprints

In the sprints a top class women’s 100m line up includes Murielle Ahoure of the Ivory Coast, who was second in Eugene, Commonwealth Games gold medallist, Michelle-Lee Ahye of Trinidad and Tobago, Briton, Dina Asher-Smith and Nigeria’s Blessing Okabbare-Ighoteguonor.  While in the men’s 200m with Christian Coleman absent with a hamstring injury, World Champion Ramil Gulivyev of Turkey and Trinidad and Tobago’s Jereem Richards, who was second in both Eugene and Doha, are clear favourites. 

In the women’s 400m world champion, Phyllis Francis of the USA meets the silver medallist from London, Salwa Eid Naser while Shakima Wimbley with a season’s best of 50.18 is the in-form athlete.

Olympic champion Dalilah Muhammad of the USA is the clear favourite in the women’s 400m hurdles in her season’s best of 53.77 the second best in the world this year.   In the triple jump, Olympic Champion, Caterine Ibarguen will be hard to beat after her 14.80m leap in Shanghai although USA’s Tori Franklin will look to repeat her season’s best of 14.84m.