Christian Taylor leaps to victory at the 2017 Doha Diamond League (organisers) © Copyright
General News Doha, Qatar

Taylor, Harrison and Perkovic join Doha fields

Two-time Olympic, three-time world and six-time Diamond League champion Christian Taylor will kick off his 2018 IAAF Diamond League season in Doha on 4 May at the Qatar Sports Club in what promises to be a phenomenal triple jump showdown. Organisers have also announced a strong field in the women’s 100m hurdles lead by world record holder Kendra Harrison while Sandra Perkovic will top the field in the women’s discus.

Taylor will once again be up against Cuba’s Pedro Pablo Pichardo in a rematch of their historic battle at the meeting’s 2015 edition. Never before had two men jumped beyond 18 metres in the same competition until their showdown in Doha that year with Pichardo, the 2012 world U20 champion and 2013 world Championship silver medallist, breaking the stadium record with an 18.06m leap just ahead of Taylor’s 18.04m.

Taylor will start as the favourite after dominating the event in recent years and will be looking for his fourth Doha crown. However, further challenges will come from Nelson Evora of Portugal, the 2008 Olympic champion and 2007 world champion, 2016 Olympic bronze medallist and 2016 world indoor champion Bin Dong of China, and 2009 world bronze medallist Alexis Copello of Azerbaijan. Qatar’s 2010 Asian Games bronze medallist Rashid Al Mannai will also line up.

Meanwhile, Harrison will arrive in Doha as the recently-minted world indoor 60m hurdles champion.

 

Kendra Harrison en route to victory in the 2017 Doha Diamond League (Organisers)Kendra Harrison en route to victory in the 2017 Doha Diamond League (Organisers) © Copyright

 

She’ll face reigning Olympic champion Brianna McNeal (nee Rollins), 2018 world indoor silver medallist and World Indoor Tour winner Christina Manning, 2008 Olympic champion Dawn Harper-Nelson and Doha Diamond League meeting record holder Jasmin Stowers.

Sandra Perkovic, the world, Olympic, European and Diamond League champion, returns to head the field in the discus. With a season’s best of 69.13m, she is in great shape to extend her own Doha Diamond League record of 68.23m set in 2013. She’s face 2009 world champion Dani Stevens of Australia, who recently won her second Commonwealth Games title and finished second to Perkovic at last year’s World Championships, and Cuba’s Denia Caballero, the 2016 Olympic bronze medallist who beat Perkovic to win the 2015 world title.

Organisers for the IAAF

2018 IAAF Diamond League calendar
4 May – Doha, QAT
12 May – Shanghai, CHN
26 May – Eugene, USA
31 May – Rome, ITA
7 Jun – Oslo, NOR
10 Jun – Stockholm, SWE
30 Jun – Paris, FRA
5 Jul – Lausanne, SUI
13 Jul – Rabat, MAR
20 Jul – Monaco, MON
21-22 Jul – London, GBR
18 Aug – Birmingham, GBR
30 Aug – Zurich, SUI
31 Aug – Brussels, BEL