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17 Aug 2022

‘I came here to win’: Keely Hodgkinson admits disappointment over silver

‘I came here to win’: Keely Hodgkinson admits disappointment over silver

Annoyed Keely Hodgkinson will put any celebrations on hold after winning 800m silver at the World Championships.

The 20-year-old added to her Olympic silver medal after a season’s best of one minute 56.38 seconds in Eugene on Sunday.

She was beaten to gold by the USA’s Athing Mu, who also took victory at the Olympics last year, by 0.08 seconds with Kenya’s Mary Moraa third.

After Tokyo, sponsor Barrie Wells treated her to a spin in an Aston Martin but, this time, Hodgkinson only wanted to toast gold.

“I don’t deserve it (the Aston Martin). I have to earn that one,” she said, ahead of running in the Commonwealth Games next week.

“This year all I had on my mind was the gold. It definitely shows the expectations I’ve got for myself.

“I’m definitely a little bit annoyed but being on another world podium in my second year of being in the professional world of athletics is something I should be proud of.

“I’m grateful to be a part of it and grateful to be challenging for gold medals. I never thought I’d be doing that aged 20 and with another 20-year-old. I have a lot of respect for her but I’m obviously gutted.

“I came here to win the gold and it didn’t happen.”

Hodgkinson was ahead with 700m to go by 0.03 seconds but Mu rallied in the final 100m and managed to squeeze her British rival out just before the line.

Mu beat Hodgkinson by 0.67 seconds in Japan with the Brit closing the gap this time.

“It shows I have improved from last year,” she said. “That’s what you try to do. Unfortunately, it wasn’t good enough this time but the gap’s closing and hopefully one day I’ll get there.

“I took the shortest route. I sat in, bided my time. I was confident. I don’t think I did anything wrong, it just wasn’t my time.

“We (her and Mu) don’t race each other that much, which I think is a good thing because it builds up the tension of the across-the-pond rivalry. I think we can push each other to new heights trying to get on top. We’ll see what happens.”

After Hodgkinson’s silver, Great Britain’s 4x400m women’s relay team claimed bronze, in the final event at Hayward Field.

Victoria Ohuruogu, Nicole Yeargin, Jessie Knight and Laviai Nielsen clocked three minutes 22.64 seconds behind the USA and Jamaica.

Knight said: “It has been such a dream running with these girls. There is so much potential in this team and there are other girls not running here at the moment as well. I just want to soak this up, these moments don’t come around very often.”

Nigeria’s Tobi Amusan broke the world record in the 100m hurdles semi-final, running 12.12 seconds, en route to winning gold.

Cindy Sember’s 12.50 in the same race was a British record, taking 0.01 seconds off her sister Tiffany Porter’s previous mark, and she came fifth in the final.

Jazmin Sawyers and Lorraine Ugen finished ninth and 10th in the long jump. Sawyers posted 6.62m with Ugen 6.53m, well below her personal best of 7.05m.

Jakob Ingebrigtsen shook off the disappointment of being beaten by Jake Wightman in the 1500m to storm to victory in the 5000m. The Norwegian won in 13 minutes 09.24 seconds with Great Britain’s Marc Scott 14th.

Sweden’s Armand Duplantis broke the world record in the pole vault to win with a clearance of 6.21m.

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