Tolokonnikov showing his desire to succeed

Tolokonnikov showing his desire to succeed
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Konstantin Tolokonnikov performed well at the Russian Championships in Cheboksary.

Less than a month ago in Eskilstuna, Russia’s Konstantin Tolokonnikov found himself on the podium at the European Athletics Junior Championships after winning silver in the 800m.

He was not that happy. He had wanted gold, which is the natural determination of anyone in the final of a major event.

But now he is heading to Beijing for the IAAF World Championships after another brilliant performance at the Russian Championships in Cheboksary to prove he is having arguably the best summer of his career.

Tolokonnikov, 19, booked his place on the plane in eye-cacthing fashion with a personal best performance as he won in 1:45.76 - lowering his old time by 0.64 - to beat Ivan Nesterov (1:46.70) and Nikolay Verbitskiy (1:47.22).

The experience alone, if nothing else, will provide so much in the growing career of this teenager who was a silver medallist at the World Youth Championships in 2013.

On that occasion Kyle Langford was third but in Eskilstuna, the Great Britain athlete beat Tolokonnikov to gold.

At the end the Russian said: "I am not so content about the result but this is competition."

With that spur, he took himself to these national championships and with it came a superb display which, on times alone, would have seen him finish eighth in the 2013 world championship final in Moscow.

If nothing else, a repeat of such a run should see him into the semi-finals at the Bird’s Nest Stadium.

And he is following a brilliant recent example in the man who is Russia’s head coach, Yuriy Borzakovskiy, the 2004 Olympic and 2012 European 800m champion who won two silvers (2003 and 2005) and two bronzes at the world championships (2007 and 2011).

On this second day of the championships, Danil Tsyplakov, the European indoor high jump champion, cleared 2.31m to take the event ahead of Olympic champion Ivan Ukhov (2.28m).

Meanwhile, Dmitriy Tarabin, who won javelin bronze in Moscow, qualified for Beijing with 84.70m in the third round.