15 SEP 2007 General News

Kruger’s 69.97m beats World champion Kanter and sets new Finnish record

Frantz Kruger releases his Finnish record of 69.97m in Helsingborg, Sweden (Göran Lenz)Frantz Kruger releases his Finnish record of 69.97m in Helsingborg, Sweden (Göran Lenz) © Copyright

Helsingborg, SwedenFinn Frantz Kruger may have disappointed his new country by failing to qualify for the World Championships Discus Throw final in Osaka, but today it was all good news for the former South African, the 2000 Olympic bronze medallist, who released a mammoth 69.97m to not only break the Finnish record but beat the new World champion in the process.

Last year at Heden Sport ground in a small competition in Helsingborg, Sweden, Estonia’s Gerd Kanter made a huge throw of 73.38m. The town is where the trainer - Veisteinn Hafsteinsson  - of the 2007 World champion lives. This year a world class field gathered to challenge the World record in a Discus Throw gala and the winds were helpful for the throwers.

In the first round, the African record holder Frantz Kruger (70.32m - 2002), now competing for Finland after marrying the Finland’s 2002 European Triple Jump silver medallist Heli Koivula, opened up with a throw close to the 70 metre line. With his 69.97m he broke the Finnish national record of 69.62 which had also been set by Timo Tompuri in 2001 in Helsingborg.

Kanter put all his effort to make a really long throw but followed with five straight fouls before he finally made 68.09m for the second place. Dutch World Championships bronze medallist, Rutger Smith, improved his personal best twice and finished third with 67.63m.

Göran Linz for the IAAF

Men’s Discus Throw          
1 Frantz Kruger FIN 69.97 NR  (69,97   x   x   x   x   x)  
2  Gerd Kanter EST 68.09  (x x x x x 68,09) 
3  Rutger Smith NED 67.63 PB  (60,07 61,81 63,89 66,81 x 67,63)
4  Märt Israel EST 66.56 PB  (66,56 60,47 61,43 x 60,79 x)
5  Mika Loikkanen FIN 63.17 PB  (61,66 63,17 55,55 x 60,34 58,97)
6  Eric Cadee  NED 61.12 
7  Margus Hunt  EST 56.47 
8  Axel Härstedt SWE 54.18