The British Olympic Association

07/20/2019 | News release | Distributed by Public on 07/20/2019 13:44

Muir leads British success at Anniversary Games

Laura Muir stormed to victory in the women's 1500m at the Anniversary Games at London Stadium.

Despite an initial slow pace to the race, Muir accelerated away from German Konstanze Klosterhalfen in a blisteringly quick 57-second final lap to win in a time of three minutes 58.25 seconds.

Fellow Brits Sarah McDonald and Jemma Reekie finished sixth and seventh in personal best times of 4:00.46 and 4:02.09 respectively.

'It may have looked easy, but it wasn't,' Muir said.

'I didn't realise I ran a 57-second last lap and I'm so so happy about that. The girls are really strong and I know that my advantage is in that kick, so I just sat in there and tried to take it easy. It was all about winning today and I did that.

'London is a really fast track and it's always a great atmosphere. The conditions are usually pretty good - it was a little bit windy today, but the whole vibe of the place is really special and it makes athletes raise their game.

'There's huge strength in depth of the fields here, so you can run a world lead at one event and then someone else will do it at the next. It really helps keep pushing you on. It's great to have so much competition. My goal now is to win a medal in Doha.'

Elsewhere, Zharnel Hughes was narrowly beaten into second in the men's 100m, finishing behind South African Akani Simbine in a time of 9.95 seconds.

He said: 'I am quite happy minus the stumble but I think I ran a great race and held my composure and it was good to be in front of a London crowd.

'This crowd always inspires me and I am enjoying the music, shout out to the music promoter for that and the track is pretty fast. I always enjoy racing out here, it's just a shame I could not run a little faster.'

Compatriot Adam Gemili finished sixth while James Ellington got one of the ovations of the day as he made his comeback to athletics in the 100m heats, competing in his first 100m race since a motorbike accident in 2017.

Ellington said: 'I am so happy to be here and when it actually manifested and I was able to walk out on the line and I am lapping every moment of it up and just enjoying it. I'm going to go back to the drawing board and try to sort these injuries out.

'I have had a back problem three days ago and I could not walk but there was no way I was going to miss this race. Yesterday I started to feel a bit better but in the warm-up I started to feel pain and I walked out limping but I was not missing this. It's amazing to be here.'

In the day's other action, Great Britain were pipped by Jamaica in the women's 4x100m relay with the quartet of Ashleigh Nelson, Imani-Lara Lansiquot, Bianca Williams and Daryll Neita running 42.30 to finish second by a hundredth of a second.

Meanwhile, Laviai Nielsen clocked a personal best time as she came third in the women's 400m. A world silver medallist in the 4x400m relay two years ago, Nielsen broke 51 seconds for the first time as she clocked 50.83 behind Jamaican Olympic bronze medallist Shericka Jackson and compatriot Stephenie Ann McPherson.

There were also third place finishes for Holly Bradshaw in the women's pole vault, jumping 4.65m to come behind winner Anzhelika Sidorova and Greek Katerina Stefanidi, and Beth Dobbin in the women's 200m, running a personal best 22.50 to finish behind Jamaican double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson and Ivory Coast's Marie-Josee Ta Lou.

In the men's 5000m Andrew Butchart also managed to register a new personal best, clocking 13:06.21 to come fifth.

Sportsbeat 2019