Although Katarina Johnson-Thompson grabs the headlines with heptathlon gold on the Gold Coast – her second global title this year – the subtext is the promising performances of other British youngsters. 18-year-old Niamh Emerson heads that list claiming bronze with a 6043pts personal best. Kate O’Connor (17) finished eighth and Holly McArthur (18) tenth.
As the day progressed, it was clear that KJT was carrying an injury. She only took two jumps in the long jump – her 6.50m led – and one throw in the javelin – a satisfying 40.46m. Katarina ran well below her best in the 800m – the event won by Niamh – but did enough to finish the competition on 6255pts. She took a long time to get up off the ground, clearly in pain and tired – the world indoors may have taken more out of her than she thought.
The only other home country medal winner on the 6th day of track and field was James Arnott who took silver in the T47 100m final. Morgan Jones of Wales finished in fourth place.
Holly Bradshaw lost out on a bronze medal in the pole vault on countback, clearing 4.60m. Just behind Holly was Molly Caudery with a 4.40m PB. Lucy Bryan and Sally Peake both cleared 4.30m to finish 7th and 10th respectively.
Alex Bell acquitted herself well in 5th place (2:00.83) in the 800m final behind Semenya’s win in a games record time. In the 100m hurdles Tiff Porter came 6th, and Alicia Barrett – who will have learnt a lot from the experience – in 8th place.
Sophie McKinna’s PB of 17.76m was good enough for 5th place in the shot put final. Rachel Wallader finished just behind with 17.48m, and Amelia Strickler in 9th.
Andy Vernon’s 28:17.11 earnt him a 9th place finish in the 10,000m final. Following his 800m final, Jake Wightman will also run in the 1500m final after qualifying in an automatic place along with Charlie Da’Vall Grice. Chris O’Hare took a fastest loser’s qualifying place. Rowan Axe and Tom Marshall of Wales came 8th in their heats.
There were contrasting fortunes for England’s men in the relay heats. The 4 x 100m team of Reuben Arthur, Zharnel Hughes, Richard Kilty and Harry Aikines-Aryeetey ran the fastest heat time of 38.15s. The 4 x 400m team failed to make it to the first baton change as Matt Hudson-Smith, running the first leg, pulled up with a hamstring injury after 50 metres.