Tom Walsh has finished fifth in the latest Diamond League meeting on the Monaco waterfront, despite a best throw of 21.49m.
The 26 year old Cantabrian hit the lead with his fourth round effort in the Shot Put event, but then saw four throwers pass him over the final three rounds, and wasn’t able to respond with his usual clutch effort at the end of the contest.
In a very high quality competition held on the Monaco waterfront on the evening before the other Diamond events, seven throwers went beyond 21.20m for the first time ever. USA’s Ryan Crouser came out on top with 22.05m with compatriot Darrell Hill reaching 21.72m while Darlan Romani from Brazil came in third on 21.70m, ahead of Michal Hartyk (Poland) on 21.59 and Walsh with 21.49m.
Despite his fifth place in Monaco, the last qualifying meet for male shot putters, Walsh still leads the men’s Diamond League shot put on 25 points ahead of Crouser (23) and Hill (22). The men’s shot put final will take place in Zurich on 30 August.
In the women’s shot put also held on the on the evening before the other Diamond events, Dame Valerie Adams set a best for her in 2018, reaching 19.31m, her longest throw since September 2016.
The women’s contest was won by Lijao Gong from China with a best of 20.31m. The 2018 world leader was the only athlete in the competition to go past the 20.00m mark. Raven Saunders (USA) was second with 19.67m, while Germany’s Christina Schwantiz finished third with 19.51m.
Well behind Adams were Olympic Champion Michelle Carter (USA) and Commonwealth Games Champion Danielle Thomas Dodd (Jamaica).
Adams sits fourth in the Diamond League standings after three of four qualifying meetings and will qualify for the final in Brussels on 31 Aug, but before then will come the final qualifying round in Birmingham on 18 August.
Eliza McCartney will be the other Kiwi in action in Monaco, competing in the pole vault on Saturday morning (NZ time).
Athletics New Zealand
Track events get under way soon, schedule can be found here.