13 July 2008World season leader Konstantin Shabanov of Russia, who had been impressive throughout Friday’s first round heats and yesterday’s semi-finals, lived-up to his status of pre-event favourite outclassing the rest of the field in a new personal best and World Junior leading time of 13.27 in the men’s 110m Hurdles.
Shabanov had metres to spare over fast finishing Booker Nunley of the US who claimed silver in 13.45 with Jamaica’s Keiron Stewart winning the race for bronze over Saudi Arabia’s Sami Ahmed Al-Hayder as both were timed in 13.51, a new Asian record for the Saudi.
It was a very tight finish with Aleksey Dremin also of Russia in fifth at 13.52 and Jin Nakamura, one hundredth of a second adrift for his second Japanese Junior record in two days.
In seventh Hugary’s Balazs Baji also lowered the national junior record he set in yesterday’s semis to 13.60.
"I am very happy with my results. I am the best junior runner in the world so of course I can only be satisfied," said Shabanov. "I just did what I had to do."
Competing over the Junior hurdles (99cm) Shabanov was impressive right from the gun, his aggressive style leaving nothing to fate. Arguably the best technician in the race, Shabanov was flawless over each of the ten barriers and never challenged.
Nakamura in lane 2 and Stewart on the outside were also fast starters with Al-Hayder also in the mix. In contrast, Nunley was trailing in fifth up until halfway and that is when the American started to make his move.
Nunley’s last two hurdle flights were impressive and the 18-year-old American managed to recover from a poor first half of the race to cross the line a clear second.
Stewart heavily hit hurdles 8, 9 and 10 which cost him the silver medal but luckily for the Jamaican he had a better dip than Al-Hayder and fast finishing Dremin.
Laura Arcoleo for the IAAF