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Event Reports - Women 1500m Final

Gold Again For Tomashova
Tatyana Tomashova RUS successfully defended her title in an incident packed race that saw the disqualification of silver medallist Yuliya Chizhenko RUS for jostling. Olga Yegorova RUS was promoted to silver and France’s Bouchra Ghezielle took bronze. ”I was saving my speed until the final straight,” said the winner. “At that moment I wasn’t sure of winning, but I was feeling very good.”

The controversial incident came with 300 metres to go when favourite Maryam Yusuf Jamal BRN was at the head of a pack of four Russians hemming her in. With Jamal running slightly on the outside of the inside lane there was just enough room for Russian champion Chizhenko to force her way through. Raising an arm to squeeze past she gave Jamal a nudge that sent her sideways into Tomashova who put her arm up in defence sending the Bahranian back into Chizhenko.

Not surprisingly the former Ethiopian who trains in Switzerland was unsettled and immediately lost ground as the Russian cavalry charged past with Tomashova claiming victory from Chizhenko three metres back who had a further three metres to spare over former 5000m champion Yegorova. But after the Bahrainian protest Chizhenko was to lose her medal.

At the gun it was the fourth Russian Sobolova who was to make the pace for her team-mates. Covering the first lap in a steady 66.28sec she was followed by Jamal, Carmen Douma-Houssar CAN and Helen Clitheroe GBR. Maintaining a steady pace Soboleva stayed slightly detached in the lead passing the 800-mark in 2:12.68 (66.40) with her team-mates safely tucked in behind.

At the bell Yegorova moved into second with Jamal on the outside and the eventual medallists gathering for the attack. At 1200m (3:16:97) it looked like the Russians championships in Tula with the exception of a bealeagured Jamal in their midst. With Jamal falling back, at 200m Chizhenko made her move with Tomashova on her shoulder. Yegorova and Soboleva were detached but seemingly safe in those positions.

At 50m Tomashova moved out to sprint past Chizhenko with Yegorova settling for bronze. In the rush for the line Soboleva was squeezed out by Gezielle whose pertinacity was to pay off after the protest. Jamal eventually crossed the line a dejected sixth, later promoted to fifth. “Yes, there was some pushing at the back straight,” admitted Chizhenko before she learned the outcome of the protest, “but it was absolutely not planned.”