Fast finishing Langford seals first senior medal with silver in Gold Coast

Kyle Langford
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Kyle Langford won his first senior medal with silver in the 800m final at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast

Former European U20 800m champion Kyle Langford produced his trademark finish to win silver in the 800m at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast on Thursday (12).

Having missed out on a medal at the IAAF World Championships in London when he was fourth after making a late challenge, this time he did enough to make the podium.

Langford, 22, looked out of contention as Kenyan Wycliffe Kinyamal led a pack of three around the final bend but then with a charging burst, Langford quickly narrowed the gap and as Kinyamal tired, the Englishman edged ever closer. 

The line just came too soon for him but he still ran a personal best of 1:45.16, a mere 0.05 behind Kinyamal with Australian Luke Mathews in third in 1:45.16. 

“I knew I had it in me to win, it’s what I’ve been envisaging at every training session – to win gold. So to come short, it’s gutting but it’s one of those things,” Langford told Athletics Weekly after the final.

Had Langford been a bit closer to the leader with 150 metres left, he would probably be wearing a gold medal around his neck but this first senior success of his career will do wonders for him with the European Championships in Berlin less than four months away. 

Bronze medals for Asher-Smith and Reid; Hughes gets DQ'd

Dina Asher-Smith completed her aim of a clean sweep of major medals as she took bronze in the 200m as her English teammate Zharnel Hughes was dramatically disqualified after crossing the finish-line first in the men’s 200m final. 

Asher-Smith, the European 200m champion, ran a fine race to cross the line in 22.29 as Bahamian Shaunae Miller-Uibo triumphed in a championship record of 22.09 from Jamaican Shericka Jackson in 22.18. 

Running from lane six, Asher-Smith fended off the challenge of Jamaica’s double Olympic champion Elaine Thompson on her outside to add this medal success to her medals at Olympic Games, World Championship and European Championships. 

By the time of Berlin this summer, Asher-Smith will be one of the favourites for gold where she will face the Netherlands’ two-time world champion Dafne Schippers.

“Running a 22.2 in April is crazy,” said Asher-Smith. “Elaine is Olympic champion but I surprised myself. I knew I had more to give down the home straight.” 

It looked as though Hughes had fulfilled his potential as he took the bend in front and just held off Trinidad & Tobago’s Jereem Richards on his inside. 

But the Englishman, who had set off on a lap of honour, was then disqualified for running out his lane, with the title going to Richards in 20.12 from Canada’s Aaron Brown (20.34) and  Northern Ireland’s Leon Reid in (20.55). 

Reid’s success brings Northern Ireland their first athletics medal at the Commonwealth Games since high jumper Janet Boyle and discus thrower Jackie McKernan won silver in Auckland 1990.

Fifteen medals and counting for Doyle

Scotland’s Eilidh Doyle won the 15th championship medal of her career as she took silver for the third successive Commonwealth Games in the 400m hurdles final, never panicking and moving through in the home straight to finish in 54.80 as Jamaica’s Janieve Russell won in 54.33.

“It means so much to me. You never know with hurdling, you just have to get it right on the night. I just had to make sure I was executing the right stride pattern,” said Doyle. 

England’s Jack Green was fourth in the men’s 400m hurdles in 49.18 as Kyron McMaster won the British Virgin Islands’ first ever Commonwealth Games medal in 48.25. 

Shara Proctor won bronze for England in the long jump with a fourth round 6.75m before pulling out of the competition won by Canada’s Christabel Nettey with 6.84m while Luke Cutts was third for England in the pole vault with 5.45m as Australian Kurtis Marschall triumphed with 5.70m from Canada’s Shawnacy Barber (5.65m).

Katarina Johnson-Thompson goes into the second day of the heptathlon tomorrow in the gold medal position with 3765 points from Canada’s Nina Schultz (3639) and Australian Celeste Mucci (3613). 

Johnson-Thompson was third after three events but the 200m saw her restore her place at the top as she was the quickest in 23.56.

“It has been a bit of a ropey day and I underestimated how hard it would be. I kind of expected not to be in phenomenal shape in April because after Birmingham, I was quite exhausted mentally and physically,” she said.