Womens 200m Final
The 23 yearold Romanian Ionela Tirlea, who won the European 400m hurdles title last year, showed her tremendous versatility by winning the 200m race here in Maebashi. The blonde had a great start and was never threatened running powerfully right through the finish to stop the clock at 22.40 the fastest time in the world this year. The Russian Svetlana Goncharenko, tiring from her efforts to catch Tirlea, was almost caught at the line by Pauline Davis of the Bahamas, but held on to record 22.69 - just one 100th ahead of her rival. Both times were seasons bests.
Gold Medallist - TIRLEA Ionela (ROM)
"I am a specialist hurdler, but I love the flat running. I came here undecided whether to run 200 meters or 400 meters and to be frank I cannot claim my decision was based on anything other than I wanted to run a shorter race (she said laughingly.) It is impossible of course to have pre-race plan in such a short event. Simply when the gun went, I gave it everything until I grasped gold."
Silver Medallist - GONCHARENKO Svetlana (RUS)
"The silver medal is enough for me now. TIRLEA is a beautiful person.
I did have health problems in December, there was a terrible flu epidemic in Russia. Therefore I am quite satisfied with the time. Now I am going to get ready for the relay."
Bronze Medallist - DAVIS Pauline (BAH )
"I do appreciate this bronze. I am back now, I am not hurt (knocking on woode bench for luck as she said so.)I have had so many hamstring injuries and changes of trainers. Now it looks good for the summer season."