Much at stake in Birmingham with finals looming – IAAF Diamond League


Much at stake in Birmingham with finals looming – IAAF Diamond League

There are just two more meetings in the IAAF Diamond League ahead of the finals in Zurich (29 August) and Brussels (6 September).

Many of the places in the finals have already been secured, but dozens still remain, meaning Birmingham (18 August) and Paris (24 August) represent the final chances for athletes to improve their places in the current standings.

Sunday’s meeting in Birmingham will have 13 scoring disciplines, each of them providing a valuable scoring opportunity for the athletes involved.


Men’s 100m

Qualified after 5/6 meetings: Christian Coleman (USA), Akani Simbine (RSA)
Final: Zurich, 29 August

Christian Coleman wins the 100m at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Oslo (Deca Text & Bild) © Copyright


World indoor champion Christian Coleman, winner of the 100m in Oslo and Eugene, has already done enough to qualify for the IAAF Diamond League final in Zurich, as has London winner Akani Simbine.

Both men will line up in Birmingham alongside the likes of USA’s Mike Rodgers, China’s Xie Zhenye and Japan’s Yuki Koike, all of whom currently feature in the top eight in the overall standings, but Yohan Blake, Arthur Cisse and Andre De Grasse could upset the order.


Women’s 200m

Qualified after 5/6 meetings: Dafne Schippers (NED), Dina Asher-Smith (GBR), Elaine Thompson (JAM), Jenna Prandini (USA)
Final: Zurich, 29 August

Early season wins from Dina Asher-Smith in Doha and Stockholm helped the Briton earn a place in the final. Oslo winner Dafne Schippers, the two-time world champion, has also qualified alongside double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson and USA’s Jenna Prandini.

Blessing Okagbare, the winner in Eugene, and Diamond League champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo will line up in Birmingham alongside Asher-Smith and Schippers in the hope of earning enough points to advance to the final.


Men’s 400m

Qualified after 5/6 meetings: no one
Final: Brussels, 6 September

Michael Norman tops the standings in this event following his victories in Rome and Stanford. Although the US sprinter hasn’t quite done enough to automatically guarantee his spot in the final, his 16-point tally will likely prove sufficient.

Compatriot Michael Cherry, currently second in the standings, will be in Birmingham and could end up being the top qualifier for Brussels. Jamaican duo Nathon Allen and Akeem Bloomfield should also move up in the standings after Birmingham, while a good run from Kahmari Montgomery could see the US sprinter move into the top seven.


Women’s 800m

Qualified after 4/6 meetings: Ajee Wilson (USA)
Final: Brussels, 6 September

Ajee Wilson en route to victory in the Stockholm 800m (Hasse Sjogren) © Copyright


Stockholm winner Ajee Wilson is so far the only guaranteed IAAF Diamond League finalist in the women’s 800m, but there are still two races left in the road to the final.

Habitam Alemu and Nelly Jepkosgei are close behind Wilson in the standings but won’t be racing in Birmingham. Raevyn Rogers and Lynsey Sharp, currently fifth and seventh respectively, will be on the Birmingham startline on 18 August and vying for additional points, so too will Olga Lyakhova, Natoya Goule and Halimah Nakaayi.


Women’s 1500m

Qualified after 5/6 meetings: Gudaf Tsegay (ETH), Sifan Hassan (NED), Rababe Arafi (MAR), Gabriela Debues-Stafford (CAN), Genzebe Dibaba (ETH), Winnie Nanyando (UGA), Laura Muir (GBR)
Final: Zurich, 29 August

Seven of the 12 available spots in the women’s 1500m final in Zurich have already been decided, but several athletes in the women’s mile field in Birmingham will be hoping to move up in the standings into an automatic qualifying spot.

Axumawit Embaye, currently on the cusp of qualification, will be racing in Birmingham. Konstanze Klosterhalfen is 13th in the standings, but a strong run on Sunday should guarantee the German a spot in the final. The eight points on offer to the Birmingham victor should be enough to qualify for the women’s 1500m final, so everyone on the startline has a chance of making it to Zurich.


Women’s 3000m steeplechase

Qualified after 3/4 meetings: Beatrice Chepkoech (KEN), Emma Coburn (USA), Hyvin Kiyeng (KEN), Norah Jeruto (KEN), Celliphine Chespol (KEN)
Final: Zurich, 29 August

Four of the five qualifiers for the final – Beatrice Chepkoech, Hyvin Kiyeng, Norah Jeruto and Celliphine Chespol – will all be in Birmingham, so will line up with less pressure on their shoulders.

Fellow Kenyan Daisy Jepkemei and Bahrain’s Winfred Yavi, both currently in the top 12, are also racing on Sunday, while Canada’s Genevieve Lalonde and Germany’s Gesa Felicitas Krause could move up a few places into a qualifying spot.

Women’s 100m hurdles

Qualified after 5/6 meetings: Danielle Williams (JAM), Sharika Nelvis (USA), Christina Clemons (USA), Tobi Amusan (NGR), Kendra Harrison (USA), Elvira Herman (BLR)
Final: Brussels, 6 September

Five IAAF Diamond League victories in the 100m hurdles this year have been shared between three women – all of whom will be in Birmingham, despite having already done enough to make the final.

World leader Danielle Williams, winner in Doha and London, will take on Stockholm and Monaco winner Kendra Harrison and Oslo victor Christina Clemons. With Sharika Nelvis, Tobi Amuson and Elvira Herman all having qualified too, just two spots remain for the final in Brussels.

It means the sub-plot to the women’s 100m hurdles in Birmingham is that it will essentially be a race-off between Nia Ali, Queen Claye, Megan Tapper, Janeek Brown and Nadine Visser for one of those two coveted places.


Men’s 400m hurdles

Qualified after 4/6 meetings: no one
Final: Zurich, 29 August

The men’s 400m hurdles may have provided some of the highlights on the IAAF Diamond League circuit this year, but with two qualification races still to go in the series, no one has yet secured a guaranteed place in the final.

Ireland’s Thomas Barr, the only man to contest three scoring 400m hurdles races this year, is the current leader in the standings and he could well extend his lead in Birmingham as the likes of Karsten Warholm, Rai Benjamin and Abderrahman Samba won’t be there.

Birmingham-bound David Kendziera, Takatoshi Abe and Yasmani Copello will move up the standings on Sunday, but the positions could all change again in Paris six days later.


Men’s high jump

Qualified after 4/6 meetings: Ilya Ivanyuk (ANA), Majd Eddin Ghazal (SYR), Bogdan Bondarenko (UKR)
Final: Zurich, 29 August

Ilya Ivanyuk and Majd Eddin Ghazal, two of the three guaranteed IAAF Diamond League finalists, will contest the high jump in Birmingham.

Diamond League champion Brandon Starc and China’s Wang Yu will also be in attendance, looking to move into an automatic qualifying spot in the overall standings, so too will Japan#s Naoto Tobe and Kenya’s Mathew Sawe. Paris the following week will offer another scoring opportunity.

Women’s pole vault

Qualified after 4/6 meetings: Katerina Stefanidi (GRE), Sandi Morris (USA), Anzhelika Sidorova (ANA)
Final: Brussels, 6 September

Top-five placings from Katerina Stefanidi at all four scoring opportunities so far in the IAAF Diamond League have guaranteed the world and Olympic champion a place in the final next month.

The Greek record-holder will extend her lead in Birmingham, while Robeilys Peinado, Katie Nageotte, Yarisley Silva, Angelica Bengtsson, Alysha Newman and Holly Bradshaw will all be looking to consolidate their place in the top 12 ahead of the next scoring fixture in Paris.


Women’s long jump

Qualified after 3/4 meetings: Maryna Bekh-Romanchuk (UKR), Malaika Mihambo (GER), Caterine Ibarguen (COL), Brittney Reese (USA)
Final: Brussels, 6 September

Lorraine Ugen at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in London (AFP / Getty Images) © Copyright


Half of the eight places available in the women’s long jump IAAF Diamond League final have already been secured, meaning Lorraine Ugen, Yelena Sokolova and Ivana Spanovic – currently sixth, seventh and ninth respectively in the standings – will be keen to bank valuable points when they compete in Birmingham on Sunday.

In theory, a victory from any of the contenders in Birmingham could give them enough points in the standings to qualify for Brussels.


Men’s javelin

Qualified after 3/4 meetings: Andreas Hofmann (GER), Cheng Chao-Tsun (TPE), Magnus Kirt (EST), Thomas Rohler (GER)
Final: Zurich, 29 August

Not content with having already secured their place in the final in Zurich later this month, Andreas Hofmann, Cheng Chao-Tsun, Magnus Kirt and Thomas Rohler will all be in Birmingham on Sunday.

So too will the three – as yet unqualified – men who follow that quartet in the standings: Marcin Krukowski, Jakub Vadlejch and Johannes Vetter. Bernhard Seifert and Keshorn Walcott also stand a chance of banking enough points in Birmingham to book their ticket for Zurich. – IAAF.






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