2018 Rabat DL: Big Performances at Meeting International Mohammed VI D'Athletisme de Rabat, Rabat (Prince Moulay Abdellah)

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Kendricks_Sam1a-PreC18.jpgSam Kendricks win pole vault in Rabat DL, photo by PhotoRun.net

Kigen_BenjaminFH-Pre18.JPGBenjamin Kigen wins steeplechase in Rabat DL, photo by PhotoRun.et

Miller_Shaunae1c-Pre18.JPGShaunae Miller-Uibo, 200 meter in Rabat DL, photo by PhotoRun.net

Here's an event by event update on the excellent Rabat Diamond League meeting today! Some exciting races and great battles at the Meeting International Mohammed VI D'Athletisme de Rabat. The Rabat meeting replaced the NYC DL which ended its reign in the media capital of the world in 2015. It featured some big races and big rivalries.

Semenya 1k DLR, Coleman back with a win
RABAT (MAR, July 13): Hellen Obiri's 14:21.75 and Caster Semenya's 2:31.01 (also DLR) highlighted five world leads at the ninth IAAF Diamond League meeting of the season, also notable for Mariya Lasitskene's defeat after 45 wins. Yomif Kojelcha, Caterine Ibarguen and Benjamin Kigen also topped 2018 lists. In addition, Akeem Bloomfield, Brianna McNeal, Sam Kendricks and Magnus Kirt set meeting records, sprinters Coleman and Baker equaled it. Brahim Kaazouzi took the home win in the 1500m. The summary: 5 World leads, 7 new meeting records and equaled in 100 m by two sprinters. And not to forget European 5000 m record by Sifan Hassan.
Event by event
Men
100: Christian Coleman returned after six weeks out with injury to equal the meet record and season's best of 9.98 (-0.4). Ronnie Baker in second was on the same time and Noah Lyles was third with 9.99. The detail: 9.972 Coleman, 9.978 Baker.
400: Making his pro debut at the distance, Akeem Bloomfield was a clear winner in 44.33 MR as Abdellalah Haroun was second in 44.69 and Matthew Hudson-Smith third in 44.79 confirming his status among Europeans.
1500m: A home win fell to Brahim Kaazouzi, who fought down the home straight with Ayanleh Souleiman for a PB 3:33.22. Filip Ingebrigtsen came past for second in 3:33.40 with Souleiman two hundredths down. Olympic champion Matthew Centrowitz was 10th in a season's best 3:35.17.
3000m: Yomif Kejelcha used a devastating turn of speed at the bell to come away from the pack and win in 7:32.93 - a meeting record and world lead. Birhanu Balew was second in a PB 7:34.26 as Australia's Stewart McSweyn, with 7:34.79, took more than 12 seconds off his best to climb to second on the Australian all-time list. Paul Chelimo was fourth with 7:34.83.
3000m steeplechase: Benjamin Kigen followed up his Eugene win with a world lead and PB 8:06.19 after sprinting away on the final lap. Conseslus Kiptruto faded badly and finished a lowly 12th in 8:27.46. The home crowd were silenced when Soufiane El Bakkali was left by the burst, eventually finishing third in 8:09.58 behind Chala Beyo's PB 8:07.27, which was the second best ever by an Ethiopian.
Pole vault: Sam Kendricks, with a meeting record of 5.86m at his second attempt, took the win. Pawel Wojciechowski was second with 5.80m, a height matched by Tim Morgunov in third. Shawn Barber was fourth with 5.60m. Lavillenie after 545 did not clear 560.
Long jump (non-DL): Tajay Gayle found 8.09m enough to win from Marquis Dendy's 8.05m.
Javelin: Magnus Kirt continued his good form with an 89.75m win - an Estonian record and meet record. That sixth-round throw was enough to put him in front of Andreas Hofmann's 88.58m. Jakub Vadlejch was third with 85.31m (last attempt) and Thomas Rohler fourth with 85.19m.
Women
200m: Dina Asher-Smith had a big lead well into the race but was tracked down by Shaunae Miller-Uibo, who maintained her unbeaten status at both events in 2018. The times of 22.29 also a MR (-0.5) and 22.40 put them ahead of Jenna Prandini (22.60).
800m: Favourite Francine Niyonsaba had to fight in the home straight but prevailed in 1:57.90 over Jamaican Natoya Goule (1:58.33). Home Rababe Arafi was third in 1:58.84.
1000m (non-DL): A rare time trial for Caster Semenya ended in 2:31.01 - a world lead, Diamond League record, meeting record and the ninth best time in history. Ce'Aira Brown took second with 2:35.85. Dutch Verstegen clocked European lead 2018 2:37.49.
5000m: Hellen Obiri set a world lead of 14:21.75 after holding off Sifan Hassan, whose 14:22.34 broke Liliya Shobukhova's European record and took to her seventh all-time. Letsenbet Gidey also set a PB with 14:23.14 - likewise Senbere Tefere (14:23.33) and Agnes Tirop (14:24.24), who were fourth and fifth. Genzebe Dibaba dropped off the pace with three laps to go and came home sixth in 14:42.98.
100m hurdles: Brianna McNeal had a tussle until the last few strides to overcome Sharika Nelvis but 12.51 (+0.1, MR) brought her home 0.07 in front. Christina Manning was third with 12.72 and Dawn Harper-Nelson fourth in 12.86.
High jump: Mariya Lasitskene's unbeaten run is over after 45 straight wins dating back to July 2016. With 1.94m her lowest unsuccessful height in more than two years, 1.90m was her best for third place. Mirela Demireva won with 1.94m - the same height as second-placed Yuliya Levchenko.
Triple jump: A fifth-round 14.96m gave Caterine Ibarguen a world lead and meeting record. Second was Kimberly Williams with 14.47m and third Tori Franklin with 14.42m.
Shot: Christina Schwanitz's 19.40m in the first round proved enough to win as Aliona Dubitskaya set a PB of 19.21m and Valerie Adams produced a season's best of 18.93m for third.

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