Plau­dits pour­ing in for Dina Asher-Smith

Athletics Weekly - - Contents -

DINA ASHER-SMITH is soak­ing up the end-of-sea­son plau­dits. Last week­end alone she was named Euro­pean fe­male ath­lete of 2018, while in the Bri­tish press

she graced the cover of The

Sun­day Times Style mag­a­zine. The lat­ter (see be­low, right)

was timed to co­in­cide with The Sun­day Times sportswoman of

the year awards, the re­sults of which are de­cided to­day (Nov 1) in Lon­don.

In The Sun­day Times Style fea­ture, she was pho­tographed wear­ing the Off-White cloth­ing that fea­tured in AW’s news pages last week, while her in­ter­viewer wrote there is “no bet­ter spokesper­son for women in sport than Dina Asher-Smith,” adding: “She is a pos­i­tive new voice. And it is won­der­ful to meet a woman so in love with her job that she will com­mit ev­ery­thing she has to it.

“There’s no time for ro­mance, no time for hob­bies, lit­tle time for friends; only a sin­gu­lar fo­cus on get­ting onto the podium.

This is the at­ti­tude tak­ing her to the Tokyo Olympics in 2020, for which she be­gins pre­par­ing next month.”

At the Euro­pean Ath­let­ics Golden Tracks awards in Lau­sanne, mean­while, she was an­nounced as fe­male ath­lete of the year while Kevin Mayer of France took the men’s prize, cour­tesy of his de­cathlon world record and world in­door gold.

Asher-Smith is the fourth Bri­tish ath­lete to win the award af­ter Sally Gun­nell in 1993, Kelly Holmes in 2004 and Jes­sica En­nis-Hill in 2012, tak­ing the 2018 tro­phy ahead of last year’s Euro­pean ath­lete of the year Ka­te­rina Ste­fanidi of Greece and Euro­pean, world and Olympic hep­tathlon cham­pion Nafis­satou Thiam of Bel­gium.

Mayer is the third French ath­lete to be crowned male Euro­pean ath­lete of the year af­ter Christophe Le­maitre in 2010 and Re­naud Lav­il­le­nie in 2014.

The de­cath­lete took the prize ahead of Turk­ish sprinter Ramil Guliyev, Nor­we­gian mid­dle-dis­tance tal­ent Jakob Inge­brigt­sen and Swedish pole vaulter Ar­mand Du­plan­tis.

Du­plan­tis and Inge­brigt­sen did still re­ceive awards, how­ever, as they were named joint win­ners of the men’s ris­ing star ac­co­lade, while Be­laru­sian hur­dler Elvira Her­man won the women’s award.

Elsewhere, Greg Ruther­ford was pre­sented with a life­time achieve­ment award af­ter his long jump ca­reer ended in 2018. “It’s an in­cred­i­bly proud day,” he said.

Ukraine’s two-time Euro­pean 800m cham­pion Nataliya Pryshchepa re­ceived the fair play award fol­low­ing her act of sports­man­ship in the heats when she ran to the as­sis­tance of Bel­gium’s Re­nee Eykens who fell in the home straight.

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