Poland’s 2014 world indoor champion Kamila Licwinko got the biggest cheers of the night despite three world-leading marks at the Pedro’s Cup meeting in Lodz.
The local high jump star cleared 1.98m at the penultimate European Athletics Indoor Permit Meeting of the winter, before three unsuccessful attempts at what would have been a national record and world-leading height of 2.02m.
The stage is now set for a terrific women’s high jump contest at the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Prague in just over two weeks’ time, bringing together Licwinko, Russia’s Mariya Kuchina, Spain’s defending European indoor champion Ruth Beitia as well as Lithuania’s Airine Palsyte and Italy’s Alessia Trost.
The trio of world-leading marks in the Atlas Arena all came in the last 15 minutes of the meeting.
Cuba’s Orlando Ortega clocked 7.45 to win the 60m hurdles, closely followed by American shot putter Ryan Whiting reaching 21.80m before St Kitts’ evergreen sprinter Kim Collins brought the exciting evening to an end with a 60m victory in a national record of 6.47.
Whiting was chasing Czech Republic’s inspired Tomas Stanek for much of the first half of the competition after the latter opened with a personal best of 20.89m and then improved in the third round to 20.94m.
However, Whiting took the lead with 21.45m in the fourth round and then cemented his emphatic victory with a meeting record of 21.80m with the last effort of the competition.
In the men’s pole vault, Poland’s Piotr Lisek had a clean sheet up to and including 5.75m, a height no one else could clear.
He then had the bar raised to what would have been a national record of 5.88m but had three unsuccessful attempts.
The closest contest on the night was the women’s 60m as just 0.02 separated the top five.
Bulgaria’s Ivet Lalova had a flying start but the 2012 European 100m champion was caught on the line by Ukraine’s 2011 European indoor champion Olesya Povh, the latter getting the verdict in 7.22.
Lalova and Povh’s compatriot Nataliya Pohrebnyak were also given the same time.
Watch the 60m race from Lodz below:
Polish teenage sprint prodigy Ewa Swoboda, who is still only 17, finished fifth with a time of 7.24, breaking the national junior indoor record for the fifth time this year.
With another year in the junior ranks, Swoboda can reasonably start thinking about Silke Möller’s European junior record of 7.12, the German athlete having run that time back in 1983.