Sandra Perkovic in the discus at the IAAF Continental Cup (Getty Images) © Copyright
Preview Ostrava, Czech Republic

Preview: women's discus – IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018

It will come as a major surprise if anyone manages to defeat Croatia’s Sandra Perkovic, who has ruled this event with such ruthless brilliance in recent years.

She suffered a shock defeat at the IAAF Diamond League final in Brussels last week while still recovering from flu, her first loss in 13 months, the Croat only able to muster a best of 64.31m as Cuba’s Yamie Perez seized the chance to take victory with 65.00m.

But Perkovic, a two-time world champion and two-time Olympic gold medallist, has otherwise been peerless this season, launching a world lead of 71.38m in Doha back in May and taking the European title in August with 67.62m. She will be backed up on the European team by Germany’s Nadine Muller, who finished runner-up to Perkovic in Berlin with her best of 63.00m.

Perez will also oppose once again in Ostrava, the Cuban lining out alongside Brazil’s Andressa Oliveria De Morais on the Americas team, though Perkovic’s chief threat may well come from the Asia-Pacific duo.

They are led by Australia’s Dani Stevens, who threw a whopping 68.26m to take the Commonwealth title in April but has competed sparingly since. Her teammate in Ostrava, China’s Chen Yang, arrives off the back of gold at the Asian Games in Jakarta, where she threw 65.12m, slightly down on her season’s best of 67.03m.

The African team will feature Onyekwere Chioma of Nigeria, the African champion, and Ischke Senekal of South Africa.

Cathal Dennehy for the IAAF