Sarah Lavin (Emerald AC) finished fifth in her semi-final of the Women's 100m Hurdles on the final day of the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon, failing to make the final in what was an extraordinary three races ahead of the final.

Sarah Lavin fifth in world semi-final

Lavin ran the second fastest time of her life to finish in a time of 12.87s (+0.3m/s). The Limerick woman exits the championships having finished 17th overall having came into Eugene with the 23rd fastest Season’s Best.

The first semi-final was won in a new world record of 12.12s by Nigeria’s Tobi Amusan, who only yesterday had ran an African record of 12.40s. Alia Armstrong of the USA won the second heat in 12.43s, with Jamaica’s Brittany Anderson taking the third heat in a national record 12.31s.

Lavin had anticipated that a time of 12.70s would qualify her for the final, however Great Britain’s Cindy Sember took the last place in the decider having ran a new national record of 12.50s.

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The 28-year-old who has had a fantastic season so far will now feel that she can make the final at the European Championships in Munich next month having finished as the fifth fastest European at these championships.

Earlier in the day Brendan Boyce (Finn Valley AC) finished 25th in the Men’s 35k Race Walk. Boyce produced a Season’s Best of 2.33.31, just outside his PB of 2.32.49. The Donegal man finished sixth at the World Championships in Doha back in 2019 and tenth at last summer’s Olympic Games in the 50k walk, which has been controversially scrapped by World Athletics. The race has been dropped for the Paris 2024 Olympics as there is no equivalent women’s race, something which Boyce and many other athletes oppose. They argue that women should be given the opportunity to compete over 50k.

Boyce finished as ninth European and will look to build on his performance at the European Championships in Munich in three weeks’ time.

The gold medal went to Italy’s Massimo Stano in in 2.23.14, ahead of Masatora Kawano of Japan. Perseus Karlstrom from Sweden, who is coached by Cork man Robert Heffernan won bronze in 2.23.44. Heffernan also coaches Boyce and South African athlete Wayne Snyman who finished 20th.

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While a thrilling World Championships may have come to an end, attention now turns to the European Championships in Munich from August 15-21. A number of top Irish athletes including Ciara Mageean will represent Northern Ireland at the upcoming Commonwealth Games in Birmingham with the athletics programme at the Alexander Stadium running from July 30th to August 7th.

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