'Kangaroo girl' Peleteiro bounds out to European indoor triple jump title

Ana Peleteiro
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Ana Peleteiro bounded out to a European-leading 14.73m in the triple jump at the Glasgow 2019 European Athletics Indoor Championships

When you are coached by one of the greatest jumpers of all-time, you know the standards you have to meet. And when your nickname is 'Kangaroo Girl', you know you must have something special when a big leap is needed.

With the legendary Ivan Pedroso looking on, everything came together for Spain's Ana Peleteiro as she won the first gold medal of the final day of action at the Glasgow 2019 European Athletics Indoor Championships this morning.

Peleteiro took the triple jump title with the best performances of her life, first taking the lead in round three after two fouls with a personal best of 14.56m – breaking her old mark by five centimetres – and then finding an even slicker rhythm to land in the sand pit at 14.73m in round four to smash the national record of 14.64m.

Peleteiro, 23, knew it was good the moment the white flag was raised.

She put her hands to her head and then ran across to the stands to embrace Pedroso, the Cuban who won Olympic long jump gold in Sydney in 2000, four outdoor world titles in a row between 1995 and 2001 and five world indoor titles between 1993 and 2001.

Talk about pressure? Peleteiro did not show that to achieve the result of her career for an athlete who won the world U20 title at the age of just 16 in Barcelona in 2012.

"It's so special," said Peleteiro. "After two foul jumps, my coach said, 'Just do it'. And then I knew I could do it. My family gave me the nickname of Kangaroo Girl in 2012. I like kangaroos and I jump like them."

Her victory was also a European lead and after her final jump which was a foul, she pulled her name tag off and raised it high to the crowd to show who was the number one.

It was a brilliant competition with Greece's Paraskevi Papahristou breaking her personal best of 14.47m with her opening jump. In a year where the furthest she had gone was the 14.28m in qualification here on Friday, she reached 14.50m which was enough for silver while Ukraine's Olha Saladukha, 35, showed age means nothing as she won her first major medal for five years with 14.47m – a distance she achieved amazingly on three occasions.

Papahristou said: "I feel amazing, I love it all. I have an injury on my left hamstring and I knew I couldn't make many jumps."

And Saladukha, the European indoor champion in 2013 and a triple European outdoor champion, said: "It is good to be back (winning a medal) after so long."

Urena in command for Spain ahead of the heptathlon climax

With one discipline left in the men's heptathlon – the 1000m this evening – it is Spain's Jorge Urena who has a narrow lead.

He is in front with 5391 points from Great Britain's Tim Duckworth with 5385 and Authorised Neutral Athlete Ilya Shkurenyov with 5330.

But it was a dramatic penultimate event - the pole vault - as Czech Republic's Jiri Sykora had to be taken away on a stretcher after landing badly on his second attempt at 4.40m and then Estonia's Janek Oiglane had to retire after suffering a leg injury when he was attempting 5.00m.

Urena had a best of 5.00m as Shkurenyov cleared 5.20m to continue his medal charge while Germany's Andreas Bechmann and Belgium's 2016 European decathlon champion Thomas Van Der Plaetsen also cleared 5.20m.

After Duckworth had led overnight, the picture changed after the 60m hurdles, the fifth discipline early this morning, when Urena moved into top spot.

By winning the second heat in a personal best of 7.78 – improving on his old time of 7.83 – he was the only man to score over 1000 points.

His 1038 took in front with a total of 4481 from Duckworth with 4475 after he had run 8.16 and Sweden's Fredrik Samuelsson with 4407.

The opening heat of the 60m hurdles saw Norway's Martin Roe take his place in the start line just 14 hours after leaving the high jump with blood pouring from his head after he had crashed into the pole holding the bar.

But there was no signs of him being troubled as he broke his personal best by 0.07 to finish third in 8.36 as Shkurenyov won their heat in 8.02. Roe then achieved a second lifetime best with 4.90m in the shot to sit seventh overall with one event to go with 5145.