14 May, 2016

Long Jump Men: Gao wins China’s cheers with narrow win

Gao Xinglong took only three jumps in the much-anticipated men’s long jump tonight but his second round effort of 8.14 was enough to take victory by the narrowest of margins from Rushwal Samaai. No-one threatened the South African’s world lead of 8.34, but Gao delighted the crowd by holding on for victory thanks to his second best effort of 8.09, just 2cm better than Samaai’s. Australia’s world silver medallist Fabrice Lapierre was third with 8.09 as Gao’s young compatriots Wang Jianan, Zhang Yaoguang and Huang Changzhou filled places five to seven behind last year’s world number one, Jeff Henderson.

Gao Xinglong: "I had a little bit pain in my ankle after two jumps, it limited me from pushing myself to my best for the rest of the competition. I was surprised with the result since it was not my best performance. In terms of my next step, preparing for the Olympic Games. I will focus on my injury first and than take part in the Diamond Leagues in June in Europe. I am looking forward to a good season this year.

Rushwal Samaal: "I am pretty happy with today. Okay, I lost on countback but that is sport, you win some you lose some. The bigger distances will come later in the season."

Fabrice Lapierre: "it was not too bad and a solid opening for the season. The conditions were not bad as the wind only shifted around a little bit."