Races & Places

Mark English narrowly misses out on world final place

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Mark English (Finn Valley AC) has narrowly missed out on a place in the Men’s 800m final on Day Seven of the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon.

English finished fifth in the third and last semi-final of the event in a time of 1.45.78. The top two in each semi-final qualified automatically with two fastest non-automatic qualifiers also making the final. English battled bravely in the race but was overtaken in the final 50m by France’s Benjamin Robert which dented his hopes of progressing.

Mark English finishes tenth in the world

The Donegal man will depart Eugene having finished tenth overall and after an impressive performance to run a new Season’s Best of 1.44.76 yesterday, which is just 0.05s outside his national record, he will be full of confidence heading into next month’s European Championships.

Slimane Moula of Algeria is the fastest qualifier to the final, winning English’s semi-final in 1.44.89.

Louise Shanahan (Leevale AC) failed to advance to the semi-finals of the Women’s 800m. Shanahan, who is the Irish record holder in the event having ran 1.59.42 in Belfast earlier this summer, was aiming to qualify for the next round in what was her world championships debut. The Cork woman was in contention with 150m to go but Polish athlete Anna Wielgosz and Germany’s Majtie Kolberg pulled away in the last 60m of the race, and Shanahan had nothing in her legs to respond. She finished in a time of 2.01.71 placing fifth in the final heat.

Shanahan was the seventh non-automatic qualifier with only six progressing, missing out on a semi-final spot by 0.09s. The 25-year-old will now turn her attention to the European Athletics Championships in Munich next month where she will be looking to build through the rounds.

The heat was won by Jamaica’s Natoya Goule in 2.00.06. Jemma Reekie, Keely Hodgkinson, Alex Bell, and Ellie Baker ensured that all four British athletes qualified for the semi-finals.

The Irish 4x100m Women’s Relay Team will be the country’s sole representatives on Day Eight of the championships tomorrow. Sarah Lavin (Emerald AC), Joan Healy (Leevale AC), Molly Scott (St. Laurence O’Toole AC), Sarah Leahy (Killarney Valley AC), Lauren Roy (City of Lisburn AC), Adeyemi Talabi (Longford AC), and Kate Doherty (Dundrum South Dublin AC) make up the squad. Doherty is a non-travelling reserve.

The team race in Heat 1 of the event at 1:40am Irish Time on Saturday morning. The top three teams qualify for the final, with two non-automatic qualifiers also making it. Ireland will be in Lane 2. Great Britain have the fastest Season’s Best in the field with 42.29s. Ireland’s fastest time in 2022 is 44.25s, with the national record standing at 43.80s.

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