JOHANNESBURG – The men’s long jump will be one of the major attractions at the Bauhaus-Galan meeting in Stockholm on Sunday afternoon, the sixth stop of the IAAF Diamond League.
All eyes will be on Luvo Manyonga who is set to take to the runway to continue a winning streak that stretches back six events. He leads the 2018 world list, courtesy of his 8.58m leap in Rome last week, but he may need to replicate that – or even better – to take victory here.
That’s due to the presence of Cuban sensation Juan Miguel Echevarria, who hit the big time in Birmingham back in March, beating Manyonga to world indoor gold.
In Rome Echevarria jumped a PB of 8.53m and it will come as no surprise if he scores his first IAAF Diamond League win here. South Africa’s Ruswahl Samaai, Australia’s Henry Frayne and USA’s Jeff Henderson should also feature.
The women’s 100m will be a re-run of Oslo, with Murielle Ahoure (Côte d’Ivoire) looking to confirm form with Dina Asher-Smith, who set a British record of 10.92 just behind Ahoure’s winning time of 10.91 on Thursday.
In the middle-distance events, the women’s 1500m stands out as the most intriguing contest. It features 2011 world champion Jenny Simpson and double world indoor medallist Laura Muir, but a host of other women may well take the win, among them Nelly Jepkosgei of Kenya, Rababe Arafi of Morocco or Habitam Alemu of Ethiopia.
The men’s 1000m will see a host of world-class 800m men pit their endurance against a pair of milers, as Poland’s Adam Kszczot, along with Kenyan duo Kipyegon Bett and Ferguson Rotich, take to the line alongside Britain’s Jake Wightman and Bahrain’s Sadik Mikhou, who both contested the Dream Mile in Oslo on Thursday night.
Ethiopia’s Selemon Barega looks the undoubted class of the men’s 5000m field, the 18-year-old coming off a highly impressive win at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Eugene last month, where he unleashed a speedy kick to take victory over two miles in 8:20.01. Kenya’s Cyrus Rutto, Canada’s Mohammed Ahmed and Uganda’s Jabob Kiplimo appear to be his biggest threats.
All told, 25 Olympic and world champions will descend on Stockholm for the meeting – athletes who have 62 global medals between them – and with ideal weather conditions expected, the scenic old stadium should be rocking once again on Sunday afternoon.
African News Agency (ANA)