Genzebe Dibaba wins her 1500m semifinal at the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 (Getty Images) © Copyright
Preview Beijing, China

Five expected highlights on day 4 – IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015

Day four of the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 features five more finals on Tuesday evening. We look at what to expect from another exciting evening inside the Bird’s Nest stadium.

1. Women’s 1500m

This final takes place at 8:35pm with Ethiopian Genzebe Dibaba being the biggest favourite. The 24-year-old, who broke the world record with 3:50.07 in Monaco in July, finished eighth at the last World Championships in 2013, but won the 2012 world indoor title in this event. Dibaba was convincing through the rounds and it will take a lot to beat her.

One athlete who just might have what it takes is Sifan Hassan. The 22-year-old, representing the Netherlands, ran a 3:56.05 national record for second place behind Dibaba in Monaco. She is a fast finisher and won the European Championships in 2014, as well as the European indoors title earlier this year.

Ethiopian 19-year-old Dawit Seyaum, who has clocked 3:59.76 this season, also looked good in the semi-final, as did Commonwealth champion Faith Kipyegon. And you can never discount defending champion Abeba Aregawi of Sweden.

2. Men’s long jump

This event will be one of the highlights of the evening for one reason alone: all three Chinese jumpers will compete in the final after finishing fourth, fifth and sixth in qualifying.

World leader Jeffery Henderson was undeniably the coolest athlete in the qualifying round with an 8.36m first-round effort. Meanwhile, Olympic champion Greg Rutherford is in the best form of his career and the Briton is looking for his first World Championships medal.

Jeff Henderson in long jump qualifying at the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 (Getty Images)Jeff Henderson in long jump qualifying at the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 (Getty Images) © Copyright

Russia’s defending champion Aleksandr Menkov also made it with his last jump, but is not in his best form. This could open up the competition for one of the Chinese jumpers to take a medal. The crowd will start cheering for their favourites at 7:25pm.

3. Men’s 800m

This will be one hot final. Sunday’s semi-finals were fierce, but Olympic champion and 2011 world champion Rudisha qualified easily. But the Kenyan might not start as favourite.

Amel Tuka lines up for the 800m at the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 (Getty Images)Amel Tuka lines up for the 800m at the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 (Getty Images) © Copyright

Based on his form in the rounds, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Amel Tuka looks to be the best bet for gold in the final, which starts at 8:55pm. The 24-year-old had a PB of just 1:46.12 before July this year, but now has a best of 1:42.51, set when winning in Monaco earlier this year.

4. Men’s 400m hurdles

This formbook in this event has been turned upside down in the heats and semi-finals. One of the most open events of the championships, Kenya now has two medal favourites.

Boniface Tumuti came to China only with a personal best of 48.92 set at altitude, but improved to 48.29 in the semi-finals. Nicholas Bett ran 48.29 to win the National Trials and was convincing through the rounds.

Boniface Tumuti ()Boniface Tumuti () © Copyright

The fastest athlete in the semi-finals was also a surprise. Russia’s Denis Kudryavtsev recorded his second personal best here, 48.23, to top the semis. The final starts at 8.25pm.

5. Women’s discus

The usual suspects topped the qualification round and the same can be expected in the final, which gets underway at 7:00pm.

The two 70-metre throwers this season, Cuba’s Denia Caballero and Croatia’s Sandra Perkovic, are the ones to watch. Perkovic is the world and Olympic champion while the Cuban’s best finish is eighth in Moscow 2013.

But a lot has changed since then and the 25-year-old is ready to challenge the Croatian for the title, as is compatriot and world No.3 Yaime Perez. The German trio of Nadine Muller, Julia Fischer and Shanice Craft should also be respected.

Best of the rest

The women’s 400m semi-finalists line up at 7:05pm to earn one of the eight places in the final. Jamaican athletes Stephanie Ann McPherson and Christine Day won their heats, clocking 50.34 and 50.58 respectively. But Allyson Felix, Shaunae Miller and defending champion Christine Ohuruogu also looked good.

Allyson Felix in the 400m at the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 (Getty Images)Allyson Felix in the 400m at the IAAF World Championships, Beijing 2015 (Getty Images) © Copyright

The men’s 200m heats kick off another event at these championships. The first heat starts at 7:30pm and the seven heats feature the top duo from the men’s 100m final, Jamaica’s Usain Bolt and USA’s Justin Gatlin. Both have previously won the 200m at the World Championships, Gatlin once in 2005 and Bolt three times between 2009 and 2013.

Mirko Jalava for the IAAF