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Home >> Sports
UPDATED: 10:02, July 13, 2006
12.88, Liu Xiang breaks world record
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LAUSANNE: China's Liu Xiang smashed the 110-metre hurdles world record with a time of 12.88 seconds at a super grand prix meeting on Tuesday and then promised there was more to come.

Olympic champion Liu had jointly held the previous world best of 12.91 with Britain's Colin Jackson. He equalled the mark Jackson set in 1993 on his way to becoming China's first male Olympic track gold medallist in 2004.

"I feel perfect. I can't believe it. Everything is a dream," Liu told reporters.

"I have a long future and I want to get better step by step," added Liu, who celebrates his 23rd birthday today.

"I never thought I could break the world record. I'm feeling very tired, very happy and very excited.

"Switzerland is my lucky place. I love Switzerland and Lausanne and the fans here," Liu said.

Liu had his first victory at a grand prix meeting in Lausanne in 2002 and broke Renaldo Nehemiah's world junior record that had stood since 1978 on the track.

An ecstatic Liu completed a lap of honour wearing only his shorts after pipping American Dominique Arnold to the line on Tuesday.

Arnold was also under the old world record with a time of 12.90. Compatriot Terrence Trammell, the world indoor 60m hurdles champion, was third in 13.02.

"It was still the American record for me. I am very pleased and very happy," Arnold said.

On a night for speed, former double Olympic sprint champion Marion Jones produced her second sub-11 seconds 100 metres in three days with a comfortable victory in 10.94.

Jones, who came under scrutiny in connection with the BALCO doping scandal even though she has never failed a drugs test, ran 10.92 for victory in Saturday's Paris Golden League meeting.

With the season's fastest woman, Jamaican Sherone Simpson, not competing in Lausanne due to a hamstring injury, Jones finished 0.09 seconds clear of fellow American Me'Lisa Barber.

Torri Edwards and world champion Lauryn Williams completed a top four finish for the US.

Seasonal bests

There were several other high-tempo performances, including three further seasonal bests on the track in the men's 200 metres and the women's 100-metre hurdles and 800 metres.

Out in the field, there was a year's best performance by pole vault world record holder Yelena Isinbayeva who improved on her 4.76-metre jump in Paris three days earlier with a jump of 4.90 metres.

She failed to grab the 20th world record of her career, however, after missing her three attempts at 5.02 metres.

America's highly-promising Xavier Carter set the new benchmark in the 200 metres, finishing in 19.63 seconds - knocking 0.27 seconds off the time set by Asafa Powell in his native Jamaica last month.

Carter, 20, edged out America's Tyson Gay by 0.07 seconds, and also set a meeting record in the process.

American world champion Michelle Perry set the leading time in the world this year for the 100-metre hurdles, despite knocking down the final barrier.

Perry stayed on her feet to finish in 12.43.

"I felt really good," Perry told Reuters, "I was starting to run up on the hurdles a lot near the end and it all got a bit out of control.

"I've been working on my technique a lot though and my main focus is already on the world championships and Olympics in the next two years."

Kenya's Janeth Jepkosgei held off a spirited challenge from three-times world champion Maria Mutola to win the 800 in one minute 56.66 seconds - the leading time in the world this year.

Mozambique's Mutola, 33, was second in 1:56.77.

Leonard Scott led from the front to win a men's 100, missing world and Olympic champion Justin Gatlin, in 10.05.

Gatlin, who shares the world record with Jamaica's Asafa Powell, pulled out of the race earlier in the week because of a knee injury.

Factbox on China's Liu Xiang

Born: July 13, 1983 in Shanghai Height: 1.89 m Weight: 85 kg Discipline: 110m hurdles

*Broke the world junior record of Renaldo Nehemiah that had stood since 1978 in Lausanne in 2002

*Won the Asian Games title that year

*Was a bronze medallist at the 2003 world championships and won a silver in 2005

*60m hurdles Silver medallist in 2004 world indoor championships and bronze medallist in 2003

*Becomes the first Chinese male athlete to win an Olympic track title at Athens in 2004, equalling Colin Jackson's world record of 12.91 seconds

*Smashes the world record with a time of 12.88 in IAAF Super Grand Prix in Lausanne on July 11, 2006.

Evolution of 110m hurdles world record

13.24 seconds Rodney Milburn (USA) 7.9.72

13.21 Alejandro Casanas (Cuba) 21.8.77

Renaldo Nehemiah (USA) 14.4.79

13.00 Nehemiah 6.5.79

12.93 Nehemiah 19.8.81

12.92 Roger Kingdom (USA) 16.8.89

12.91 Colin Jackson (Britain) 20.8.93

12.91 (equalled) Liu Xiang (China) 27.8.04

12.88 Liu 11.7.06

Source: China Daily

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