Helsinki – Bulgarian Ivet Lalova produced a scintillating finish to claim the women's 100m crown at the European Championships on Thursday.

The 28-year-old, who was seventh in last summer's worlds in South Korea, was being led by Norwegian Ezinne Okparaebo and Ukraine's Olesya Povh but kicked in the final 15 metres to win in 11.28 seconds.

Arms flailing, Lalova's dip for the line in crisp, wet conditions edged out Povh for silver (11.32sec), the Ukrainian winning a photo-finish with late-runner Lina Grincikaite of Lithuania, with Okparaebo pushed into fourth.

Defending champion Verena Sailer of Germany could only manage sixth (11.42sec).

Russian Olga Golovkina won the 5000m, timing a final-strait assault to perfection to clock 15:11.70 and finish ahead of Ukraine's Lyudmyla Kovalenko and Portugal's Sara Moreira. – Sapa-AFP