The Allianz Van Damme Memorial is the 11th Diamond League meeting of 2021. It is an amazing meet, in an amazing venue, with a vociferous crowd.
Thanks to EME News for making this event by event preview.
Mondo for another top mark
BRUSSELS (BEL): The Allianz Van Damme Memorial on Friday will be the last meet before the final next week in Zurich. In the remaining events, the names of the finalists will be confirmed. Also, spectators will be there to support Mondo Duplantis for another possible attack on pole vault World Record. World lead could be expected in women’s mile by Sifan Hassan. Great fields in men 100 m and women 200 m with African youngsters, Jackson and returning Richardson. High jump women have a full Olympic podium.
100m – The US duo of Trayvon Bromell (9.77) and Fred Kerley (9.84) face African record-holder Akani Simbine (9.84) and Kenya’s Ferdinand Omurwa who has improved to 9.86 this season and makes his Diamond League debut.
400m – Olympic bronze medallist Kirani James headlines the line-up which also includes fellow Olympic finalists Michael Cherry, Christopher Taylor and Liemarvin Bonevacia.
800m (non-DL) – Olympic silver medallist Ferguson Rotich faces Kenyan teammate Collins Kipruto. The pacemaker has been asked to reach 400m at 49.5.
1500m – Spain’s Mo Katir (3:28.76) faces fellow sub-3:30 performers Stewart McSweyn (3:29.51) and Abel Kipsang (3:29.56). Here missing is Jakob Ingebrigtsen.
400m hurdles – Alison Dos Santos (46.72) and Kyron McMaster (47.08) will go head-to-head with the top two from Tokyo absent. Karsten Warholm pulled out.
Long jump – Olympic fourth-placer Eusebio Caceres leads a line-up that is depleted by the absence of the three medallists from Tokyo.
Pole vault – Olympic champion Armand Duplantis faces in-form Ernest Obiena and the US duo of Chris Nilsen and KC Lightfoot. Timur Morgunov makes his third international appearance since receiving ANA status.
200m – Shericka Jackson takes on the talented Namibian duo of Christine Mboma and Beatrice Masilingi along with world champion Dina Asher-Smith. How will Sha’Carri Richardson fare after a ninth-place finish over 100m in Eugene? Elaine Thompson-Herah has pulled out to protect her Achilles.
400 m (non-DL): Names as BEL vs NED match with top names Camille Laus and Laura De Witte on both sides.
800m – One of the races of the evening. Olympic silver medalist Keely Hodgkinson faces British teammate and Olympic fourth-placer Jemma Reekie along with fellow Olympic finalists Natoya Goule and Habitam Alemu plus the in-form US runner Kate Grace. World champion Halimah Nakaayi from Uganda also starts.
Mile – Sifan Hassan will be stepping down in distance after initially planning a world record attempt over 10,000m. The pacemakers have been asked to race 2:06 at 800m and 2:37 at 1000m. The line-up also features the US duo of Josette Norris and Elise Cranny along with Linden Hall from Australia.
5000m – Two-time world champion Hellen Obiri takes on a strong field which includes Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba and Ethiopia’s Ejgayehu Taye who were first and second over 3000m in Paris last weekend.
100m hurdles – Former world champion Danielle Williams and reigning European indoor champion Nadine Visser head the line-up after finishing first and second in Paris. Also in the field Olympic bronze medalist Megan Tapper.
High jump – The line-up includes the top five from the Olympic Games: Lasitskene, McDermott, Mahuchikh, Herashchenko, and Patterson. Two-time Olympic heptathlon champion Nafi Thiam also competes on home soil.