19 JUL 2002 General News

Women 100 metre hurdles semi-finals

Women 100m hurdles semifinals 

Yesterday’s first round having been cancelled, the women hurdlers stepped on the track for the first time tonight. Of the three heats, the first two and the two fastest losers will advance to the final scheduled for tomorrow night. 

After a false start by Venezuela’s Sandrini Legenort, the fastest out of the blocks was USA’s Tiffany Ross who was a finalist last night in the 400m hurdles. Ross who was running with a bandage visible on her left leg hit the first obstacle heavily and struggled to get into the rhythm. It was therefore Poland’s Agnieszka Frankowska and Russia’s Olga Samylova who were leading the race, with the Pole slightly ahead.

Frankowska had the best run to the tape after clearing the last hurdle and clocked 13.24. Behind her Samylova held on to second in 13.29 as Austria Elisabeth Maurer was finishing fast (13.31 – new national record). Ross who had a good middle race and seemed to be able to get back in contention heavily hit hurdles 9 and 10 and her race was then lost.

In heat 2 it was another protagonist of last night’s astonishing 400m hurdles who claimed the spotlight. Running in the inside Melanie Walker – 400m hurdles silver medallist – came out of the blocks like a missile and held on her lead to the 8th obstacle. At that point, USA’s Ashlee Williams who was evidently more powerful took the lead and came first to the tape in 13.44. Finishing fifth Croatia’s Andrea Ivancevic set a new Croatian Junior record.

There was some drama in heat three as the second fastest of all eight runners, Poland’s Justyna Oleksy was disqualified for false starting twice. The race could then take off with Cuba’s CAC junior champion and fastest junior in the world this year Anay Tejeda sprinting to the first hurdle. Despite hitting the first obstacle Tejeda was strong enough to power to the finish line in 13.07, the fastest time of all three heats. Running on the outside, Germany’s Tina Klein set a new personal best of 13.20 to finish second. In fifth Puerto Rico’s Solimar Febles set a new national record of 14.24.

The two fastest losers were Elisabeth Maurer of Austria (13.31) and Mirjam Liimask of Estonia (13.72). There will be representatives of 8 different countries in tomorrow’s final.