Friday 21 September, 2018

Pinnock secures Jamaica's first medal at World Under-20 Championships

Wayne Pinnock celebrates after he secured Jamaica's first medal at the IAAF World Under-20 Championships in Tampere, Finland on Wednesday. Pinnock finished third for bronze in the men's long jump.

Wayne Pinnock celebrates after he secured Jamaica's first medal at the IAAF World Under-20 Championships in Tampere, Finland on Wednesday. Pinnock finished third for bronze in the men's long jump.

Wayne Pinnock secured Jamaica's first medal at the IAAF World Under-20 Championships in Tampere, Finland on Wednesday with bronze in the men's long jump.

The bronze represents Jamaica's first ever long jump medal at the championships.

The Kingston College student finished third with an effort of 7.90 metres to pick up the bronze medal. Pinnock's bronze medal effort came with his first attempt. He followed up the 7.90m effort with 7.74m, 7.83m, 7.70m, 7.82m and 7.72m.

“The experience has been really good and I am of course really happy,” he said. “A bronze medal is really good. I've been working really hard for this,” said Pinnock.

Yuki Hashioka upset the odds to claim the gold medal, the 19-year-old producing a stunning 8.03m leap in the third round which saw him through to the top step of the podium.

Hashioka was always likely to be a threat to Cuba’s Maikel Vidal, the world U20 leader, and that proved well-founded when he secured Japan their first ever long jump title in the 32-year history of these championships.

Hashioka started the competition as he meant to go on, sweeping to the lead in the first round with an impressive leap of 7.91m.

Vidal had previously held the lead with 7.87m, and the Cuban duly responded and found a few extra centimetres in the second round, jumping 7.94m. In the third round, Vidal dug deeper again to soar out to 7.99m, but still he struggled to find that magical strike he needed to grab gold.

Hashioka, meanwhile, was only growing in confidence, and in the third round he set the bar at an intimidating height for others to reach, sailing through the evening air to a mark of 8.03m (0.9m/s).

His two subsequent efforts offered no improvement, but none of his competitors could close the gap either, allowing Hashioka to enjoy a victory jump in the final round.

Jamaica's Shakwon Coke finished seventh with a personal best throw of 7.73m.

Sprinter Michael Stephens will look to add to the medal tally when he competes in the men's 100m final at 12:05 Jamaica time.

Stephens clocked a lifetime best 10.22 seconds to book his spot in the medal round during the morning session.

Stephens achieved the 10.22 clocking in heat 2 of the semi-finals won by Henrik Larsson of Sweden, who was also credited with the same time, which represents a Swedish National Under 20 record.

The 10.22 clocking means that Stephen and Larsson will enter the final, set for later at 11:05 am Jamaica time, with the joint second fastest qualifying time.

The second Jamaican in the semi-finals -Michael Bentley - who won the National Under 20 title at the Jamaican National Junior Championships last month, did not start as a result of an injury.

Gold medal favourite, 17-year-old Anthony Schwartz of the USA has the fastest qualifying time going into the final.

Schwartz, who claimed the US U20 title in 10.23 last month to secure his place in Tampere, won the first semi-final in 10.19.

Schwartz is the world U20 leader courtesy of his 10.09 clocking in Albuquerque last month.

For the latest news, download our app at http://bit.ly/GetALoopJM for Android; and at http://bit.ly/GetiLoopJM for IoS.