McLaughlin looks to emulate Warholm on Day 6 of Olympic athletics
Tokyo (AFP) –
The sixth day of athletics at the Tokyo Olympics takes place on Wednesday. AFP Sport looks at five stand-out events:
- Men's 200m - Final -
World champion Noah Lyles won't be taking any more chances after he survived a finish-line gaffe to qualify for the 200 metres final.
The 24-year-old slowed up with 10 metres of his semi left and was overtaken at the line by Canada's Aaron Brown and Liberian Joseph Fahnbulleh, all three credited with 19.99sec.
It meant Lyles didn't qualify automatically as one of the first two finishers, and instead had an anxious wait as the third and final semi went ahead.
That was won in some style by Brown's teammate Andre de Grasse, the Rio silver medallist. Lyles qualified as one of the next two fastest, along with Jereem Richards of Trinidad and Tobago.
US teen sensation Erriyon Knighton won the opening semi-final convincingly in 20.02sec, scoring a psychological blow by casually looking across the field no less than four times on the back stretch.
- Women's 400m hurdles - Final -
After Karsten Warholm's thrilling world-record run in the men's hurdles on Tuesday, arguably one of the best Olympic races in living memory, fireworks are also expected when the women take to the track.
Leading the assault will be American Sydney McLaughlin, who, like Warholm, set a new world record just before the Tokyo Games.
McLaughlin clocked 51.90sec to win the US trials after a superb tactical race against reigning Olympic and world champion Dalilah Muhammad.
In what promises to be hot, humid conditions on a fast track, Dutch runner Femke Bol will be hoping to be the proverbial fly in the ointment.
- Women's 1500m - Semi-finals -
Ethiopian-born Dutch star Sifan Hassan is back on the track in her quest for an unprecedented treble in the 1500, 5000 and 10,000m.
There was drama in her opening heat of the 1500m when she was forced to pick herself up following a fall forced to move through the gears as she hunted the leaders down to eventualy finish first.
Incredibly she was back on track just 12 hours after that, crushing the field in well-timed last-lap sprint to claim gold in the 5000m.
How she copes with the rough and tumble of the 1500m will determine if she can keep her audacious bid alive.
- Men's decathlon - Day 1 -
France's Kevin Mayer won silver behind then-world record-holder Ashton Eaton, who is now retired, at the Rio Olympics.
Mayer went on to win the world title in London in 2017, going on to break the world record in Talence with 9,126 points.
There was disaster, however, at the 2019 worlds in Doha, when he was forced to retired with injury.
Any weakness will surely be exploited by Canada's Damian Warner, who has finished in the top five at the past six outdoor global championships, picking up Olympic bronze in 2016 as well as world silver in 2015 and world bronze in 2013 and 2019.
Germany's world champion Niklas Kaul and American Garrett Scantling and Estonian world silver medallist Maicel Uibo will all be battling for a top-three spot.
The first day features the 100m, long jump, shot put, high jump and 400m.
- Women's heptathlon - Day 1 -
Thanks to injuries and the Covid-19 pandemic, world champion Katarina Johnson-Thompson of Britain and Olympic champion Nafi Thiam of Belgium have not contested a full heptathlon since their clash at the Doha world championships in 2019.
Thiam's breakthrough came when she claimed gold at the Rio Games and this year she won the European indoor title in March with a national record of 4,904 points.
Johnson-Thompson suffered a ruptured achilles earlier this year but returned to competition at the end of June, testing herself in a range of disciplines.
The US trio of Annie Kunz, Kendell Williams and Erica Bougard will all seek to ascend the podium, along with Hungarian Xenia Krizsan.
The first day features the 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put and 200m.
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