Johnson-Thompson wins World Athletics Championships heptathlon gold

first_imgKATARINA Johnson-Thompson has ended her wait for her first global outdoor title by powering to heptathlon gold at the World Championships.The 26-year-old, previously without an outdoor medal at this level, won with a British record 6,981 points, beating 2017 champion Nafissatou Thiam by 304 points. Austria’s Verena Preiner took third.It is Great Britain’s third medal in Doha following Dina Asher-Smith’s 200m gold and 100m silver.“This is the result of so many attempts of trying to perform on this stage,” Johnson-Thompson told BBC Sport.“The low moments have helped me come back and look at myself. This has been my dream.“It has been such a long road. I am just happy that I’m coming into my best in these two big years.”Johnson-Thompson led Thiam by 137 points going into the concluding 800m and stormed to victory in two minutes 07.26 seconds – her fourth personal best of the competition.The omens looked good for her when in the first event on day one she took 0.21 seconds off her previous best to win her 100m hurdles in 13.09 seconds.The Briton’s high jump of 1.95cm was matched by Thiam, before she scored a huge personal best in the shot put – one of her weaker events. The distance of 13.86m was 71cm further than she had ever gone before.After the 200m, the Briton had a 96-point overnight lead over the Belgian, nine better than her advantage at last year’s European Championships where she eventually finished second.The pattern continued yesterday as Johnson-Thompson’s consistency, paired with a below-par Thiam, saw the Liverpool athlete extend her lead.In the long jump, another of her strong events, she leapt to 6.77m. Thiam, who managed 6.86m in Birmingham in August and defeated the Briton, only went out to 6.40m.Then came the moments that effectively clinched gold for Johnson-Thompson as first she recorded another PB by throwing the javelin to 43.93m before Thiam, who had been struggling with an elbow injury, managed only 48.04m – her best is 59.32m – and skipped her final throw.That gave her the 137-point lead over the Belgian going into the 800m, having previously trailed her rival at this stage.Johnson-Thompson kept her cool during the final event which she won before lying down on the track to contemplate what she had achieved.Her points total surpassed the previous best of 6 955 set by Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill at the London 2012 Olympics. (BBC Sport)last_img read more

O’ Connell and Murray to start for Munster

first_imgPaddy Butler replaces CJ Stander in the back row .Tipperary native Tommy O’ Donnell is also named in Anthony Foley’s side.Munster XV v Zebre (Pro 12, Thomond Park, friday, K/O 7:30): Felix Jones – capt, Ronan O’Mahony, Andrew Smith, Denis Hurley, Simon Zebo; Johnny Holland, Conor Murray; James Cronin, Duncan Casey, BJ Botha; Billy Holland, Paul O’Connell; Paddy Butler, Tommy O’Donnell, Robin Copeland.Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, Dave Kilcoyne, John Ryan, Donncha O’Callaghan, Sean Dougall, Duncan Williams, JJ Hanrahan, Johne Murphy Conor Murray returns to the Munster starting 15 for tomorrow’s clash at Thomond Park.Johnny Holland starts at out half, while Ronan O’ Mahony replaces Andrew Conway on the wing, with Denis Hurley coming in for Ivan Dineen in the centre.Up front BJ Botha takes over at prop from Stephen Archer, while Paul O’Connell starts in the second row.last_img read more