IAAF World Championships Report: Day 10

Allyson Felix ran a blistering second leg to steer the USA to gold in the women’s 4X400m relay and secure a special place as the most successful female athlete in the history of the IAAF World Championships.

14/08/2017 08:00

Sunday’s last night of action included a special tribute to Usain Bolt, who has won a record 11 golds and a total of 14 medals. But Felix’s two gold medals in both the 4x100m and 4x400m relays at the weekend have taken her level with Bolt on 11 golds and ahead of the Jamaican with a total tally of 16 medals. 

Until London 2017, Merlene Ottey was the most decorated female athlete with 14 medals. 

The 31-year-old Felix does not like to talk about her place in the history of the sport and she may not appreciate the historical significance of her achievements at the London Stadium until she retires. 

But she said after Sunday’s 11th gold: "It does mean so much to me every time. I'm grateful to run with these amazing girls. They work so hard and deserve all their success. It's an honour to run in the relay for Team USA and I will always treasure these moments."

The last night of action also saw South Africa’s Olympic champion Caster Semenya match the record of Mozambique’s Maria Mutola with her third world title in the women’s 800m. Semenya won the race with ease after a well-timed kick down the home straight, clocking 1:55.16 ahead of Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi and American Ajee Wilson.   

Majd Eddin Ghazal clinched Syria their first ever men’s world medal, holding off fourth-placed Mexican Edgar Rivera for the bronze medal in the high jump because he had taken fewer efforts at 2.29m. The gold was won by Qatar’s Mutaz Essa Barshim with 2.35m ahead of silver medallist Danil Lysenko (2.32m) who was competing as an authorised neutral athlete. 

Almaz Ayana, the 10,000m champion, could not live with a blistering burst from Kenya’s Hellen Obiri with 300 metres to go in the women’s 5000m final. Obiri, the silver medallist at last year’s Rio Olympics, took the gold in 14:34.86 ahead of silver medallist Ayana with Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands, who was run out of the medals in the 1500m, winning bronze. 

The home crowd enjoyed cheering on the British teams in the 4x400m relays. Great Britain and NI came in second ahead of bronze medallists Poland in the women’s relay won by Felix, Quanera Hayes, Shakima Wimbley and individual 400m champion Phyllis Francis. 

The British quartet also came in third behind winners Trinidad & Tobago and the United States in the men’s 4x400m. 

Croatia’s Sandra Perkovic, who has won gold at both the 2012 and 2016 Olympics in the women’s discus, threw 70.31m to win her second world title after 2013. 

Earlier in the day, France’s Yohann Diniz become the oldest man ever to win a world athletics gold medal at the age of 39 with an impressive solo performance in the 50km race walk around central London.