Rudisha, Powell highlight IAAF Diamond League in Doha

11:14, May 15, 2010      

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The inaugural IAAF Diamond League kicked off in the Qatari capital on Friday with nine world leading performances capped by 800m ace David Rudisha and former 100m world record holder Asafa Powell.

David Rudisha of Kenya celebrates after winning the men's 800m race at the IAAF World Athletitcs Tour Zlata Tretra Ostrava (Golden Spike) in Ostrava June 17, 2009. (Xinhua/Reuters File Photo)

With a lineup of world and Olympic medalists, the men's 800m was billed as the race of the night when Rudisha showed the world again that he just could be the event's next prominent force.

The 21-year-old Kenyan, the African record holder at 1:42.01, tucked behind the pacesetter Sammy Tangui, slightly altered tempo plans to test his second half strength.

His only serious challenge came from compatriot Asbel Kiprop, the Olympic 1,500m champion, and he handily fended him off over the final 200 metres, maintaining his rhythm en route to his 1:43.00 meeting record.

"Everything was right," said Rudisha, who arrived in Doha as the world leader thanks to his 1:43.15 in Sydney back in March. "I was expecting to run a fast time and I did."

Kiprop finished second in 1:43.45, with Moroccan Amine Laalou in third clocking 1:43.71. World champion Mbulaeni Mulaudzi was fourth with a season's best 1:43.78.

Asafa Powell of Jamaica competes during the Men's 100m final at the IAAF Diamond League in Doha May 14, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

In the absence of Usain Bolt of Jamaica, Powell, the two-time world championships bronze medallist didn't pull away clearly until the final 30 meters, winning the men's 100m in 9.81 seconds, a clear victory over impressive runner-up Nesta Carter.

"These are very good times for the first race of the season," said the Jamaican. Both his performances, in the heat and the final, were quicker than any of his races in 2009.

Carter held on for second in 9.88 with American Travis Padgett third in 9.92, just ahead of Michael Frater's 9.94 to spoil a Jamaican sweep in the Diamond Race points chase.

Source: Xinhua


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