DANI DREAM SPINS OUT
SHE came in as one of Australia’s few medal hopes but Dani Samuels has come up short in the women’s discus final at the IAAF World Championships last night.
The 2009 world champion was unable to repeat her heroics from six years ago, finishing sixth with a best throw of 63.14m.
Cuba’s Denia Caballero won gold with a throw of 69.28m from champion Croatia’s Sandra Perkovic (67.39m), with Germany’s Nadine Muller the bronze (65.53m).
It was a disappointing performance by Samuels – she threw 65.44m to win her world title in the German capital Berlin – given her solid lead-up form throughout the Diamond League series where she was on the podium four out of five times.
She had a season’s best of 66.21m set in Sydney in March which ranked her fourth in the world coming into Beijing and she had also gone above 65m three times.
It was an inglorious start to the competition for the 16-time Australian champion who produced a horror throw of 53.65m.
That put the pressure on, given the field is reduced to eight after three throws, but the 27-year-old recovered with her third throw of 63.08m having her rated fifth overall.
She increased that to 63.14m with her fourth throw but unfortunately that remained her best effort for the night.
Usain Bolt returned to the Bird’s Nest for the heats of the 200m and jogged around to qualify easily, clocking 20.28sec.
The world record holder hardly got out of second gear with most of his rivals registering quicker times, including his main rival Justin Gatlin (20.19sec).
In the 400m semi-finals, Anneliese Rubie could not back up her personal best performance from the heats but still clocked the second-fastest time of her career, finishing eighth in 52.04sec.
The 23-year-old, who is coached by Cathy Freeman’s mentor Peter Fortune, clocked 51.69sec in the heat but was outclassed at the next level with the semi-final won by the Bahamas’ Shaunae Miller in 50.12sec.