Solomon, Israelis on show at world champs

AUSTRALIAN sprint sensation Steven Solomon is nearing top form, after helping the 4x400m relay team place eighth in the final at the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Moscow.

After clocking the best time for the year in the heats, the team was even quicker in the final – crossing in 3:02.26 – but was unable to match the likes of team USA, Jamaica and Russia.

“It was an awesome way to end the season on a high and was made all the more special by being able to share the moment with the team,” Solomon wrote on his Facebook page after the event.

“I thought I ran well, it is tough to come out of lane eight and I was happy with how I set myself up. I gave it everything I had and am proud of how the boys followed me from there.

“This season has been a tough one, but a necessary one in my development as an athlete.”

After battling a back injury all year, Solomon is close to his best again.

He has continued to improve his times throughout the course of 2013, but was unable to qualify for the individual 400m race at the world champs, despite racing in several lead-up events including the Maccabiah Games.

“I would like to take the opportu- nity to say thank you to all those who have helped me through the season – from rehabilitation of an injury to relocation to Stanford University,” Solomon said.

“Last, but certainly not least, I would like to thank my family, friends and supporters for helping me get through a challenging year.”

There were also three Israelis in action in Moscow, all in search of the country’s first medal at the event in 12 years.

Ukrainian-born Hanna Knyazyeva-Minenko, who was granted citizenship last year following her marriage to fellow Israeli athlete Anatoly Minenko, placed sixth in the women’s triple jump final after only managing to clear 14.33m.

High jumper Ma’ayan Furman-Shahaf failed to make the final and finished in 16th spot with a top jump of 1.88m, while marathon runner Zohar Zemiro placed a disappointing 40th in a time of 2:25:23.

AJN Staff

Photo: Athletics Australia