12 JUL 2013 Report Donetsk, Ukraine

Greguric takes surprise gold in exciting Hammer contest

Matija Greguric in the Hammer Throw at the IAAF World Youth Championship 2013 (Getty Images)Matija Greguric in the Hammer Throw at the IAAF World Youth Championship 2013 (Getty Images) © Copyright

Croatia’s Matiji Greguric unleashed a mammoth 79.38m effort to snatch victory in the sixth and final round in a Hammer competition which saw the lead being exchanged several times with huge distances in the latter stages.

The 16-year-old shot from fifth to first place, pushing the previous leader Australia’s Matthew Denny (78.67m) out of contention as Belarusian Pavel Paliakou’s 79.02m last-gasp throw then snuck him into the silver medal position, thus leaving Denny to take the bronze.

Greguric enjoyed a consistent series including 76.19m, 76.62m and 78.37m efforts before taking his winning throw to clinch Croatia’s first ever medal in this event in the 14-year history of this championship.

Paliakou, meanwhile, progressed from fourth to second place with his best effort, following 77.05m, 78.45m, 77.92m and 77.60m marks.

Denny, who leads the 2013 Discus world youth list, will attempt to make amends with gold in that event on Saturday (13), having fell almost four metres short of his 81.44m best this evening.

The 17-year-old Australian fouled three times after opening his campaign with 77.66m and 77.37m, respectively – eventually going a metre further on his fifth attempt.

In fourth place, Raman Zholudzeu of Belarus registered a 78.55m personal best, while Qatar’s Ahmed Amgad Elsify threw a 77.33m lifetime best for fifth.