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Jamaica seventh at final World U18s

Jamaica Gleaner / SIXTEEN-year-old Britany Anderson stole the show for Jamaica on yesterday’s final day of competition at the IAAF World Under-18 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya, winning gold in the girls’ 100m hurdles final, in a wind-aided 12.72 seconds.

Anderson, the Vere Technical High School standout, went to the Championships as the world leader in the event, but lost that after tag to the French athlete, Cyrene Samba-Mayala, who clocked 12.98 seconds to win her heat. Anderson, who won her heat in 13.10 seconds, and went into the final as the third-fastest qualifier, showed who was the boss in the end.

Anderson and Samba-Mayala were even up to the sixth hurdle, but Anderson, in lane five, stepped on the gas to pull away from her rival, who finished second in 12.80 seconds with the other Jamaican in the final, Daszay Freeman finishing third for bronze in 13.09 seconds.

FASTEST RUN The time clocked by Anderson was the fastest ever run at this level, but the Championships record of 12.94 seconds, held by Jamaican Yanique Thompson done at the 2013 Championships in Donetsk, Ukraine, remained intact as the athletes were aided by a +4.1m-per-second wind.

Aside from the gold and bronze by Anderson and Freeman, Jamaica picked up another medal on the final day, in the last event, the mixed 4x400m relay, gaining silver. The team of Shaquena Foote, Anthony Cox, Sanique Walker and Antonio Watson, in that order, finished second in 3:22.23, as Brazil won the event in 3:21.71 for the gold, while South Africa was third for bronze in 3:24.45.

Jamaica ended the championships with eight medals overall, which included three gold, two silver and three bronze to finish seventh overall. South Africa topped the medal table with five gold, three silver and three bronze for 11 overall, as China, with five gold, two silver, four bronze for 11, and Cuba, three gold, two silver and three bronze for eight medals, closed out the top three. Host Kenya got most medals at the meet as their four gold, seven silver and four bronze saw them ending with 15, but fourth on the medal table.

Head coach of the Jamaica team, Michael Carr, said that he was pleased with the final medal haul, despite several challenges over the five days of competition.

“Overall, we did fairly well, as we had some challenges, especially with the weather, where it was very cold in the evening sessions, when the finals were being contested.

Competing this time at the back end of our season, I think the athletes did very well and we were unfortunate in some areas as injury to Kevona Davis was a major setback. Sanique Walker was very unfortunate not to win the gold medal in the 400m hurdles for girl, but kudos to the athletes, coaching and management staff, who did a great job,” Carr said.

– R.G.

Final Medal Standings Gold Silver Bronze Total

1 South Africa 5 3 3 11

2 China 5 2 4 11

3 Cuba 5 2 1 8

4 Kenya 4 7 4 15

5 Ethiopia 4 3 5 12

6 Germany 3 5 5 13

7 Jamaica 3 2 3 8

8 France 2 1 4 7

9 Ukraine 2 1 2 5

10 Turkey 1 1 1 3

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