IAAF World Championships: Kaul makes decathlon history, Naser dazzles in 400m

The men's and women's multi-event competitions reached their climax on Thursday, with Niklas Kaul and Katarina Johnson-Thompson triumphing.

Niklas Kaul celebrates after the Men's Decathlon 1500 Metres and winning gold at the 17th IAAF World Athletics Championshipsin Doha.   -  Getty Images

Niklas Kaul made history in the decathlon at the World Athletics Championships, while Salwa Eid Naser produced a sensational performance to win the women's 400 metres.

German 21-year-old Kaul took advantage of the injury-enforced withdrawal of world-record holder Kevin Mayer with just two disciplines remaining to become the youngest winner of the decathlon title.

Naser surged to glory in the 400m with the third-fastest time in history, stopping the clock at 48.14 seconds.

Katarina Johnson-Thompson produced four personal bests in heptathlon events to dethrone Nafissatou Thiam, who finished 304 points adrift in second – the biggest margin of victory in 32 years.

Gong Lijiao retained her shotput gold with 19.55m on her fourth attempt not beaten.


Kaul was down in sixth after the pole vault, 275 points adrift of leader Pierce LePage.

With Mayer pulling out during the pole vault due to an Achilles problem, the German launched himself into contention with an astonishing 79.05m in the javelin – the longest throw of any decathlete in World Championships history – although Maicel Uibo led the way from Damian Warner.


Kaul then finished the 1500m first in a time of 4:15.70 to take the title with a personal best of 8,691 points, with Uibo holding off Warner for the silver.


Johnson-Thompson finished Wednesday with a 96-point lead over Thiam and she increased that to triple figures with an impressive leap of 6.77m in the long jump in Thursday's first heptathlon event.

Thiam closed the gap with a season's best in the javelin, but the Briton produced a personal best of 43.93m to limit the damage.


Johnson-Thompson clinched the gold medal with an 800m time of two minutes, 07.26 seconds – another personal best – leaving 2017 champion Thiam to take silver and Verena Preiner with the bronze.


Having decided not to compete in the 200m and focus solely on the 400m, Olympic champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo was the favourite for gold in Doha.

Naser performed brilliantly on the second bend and, although Miller-Uibo was able to close the gap on the home straight, the Bahraini finished in the fastest time in over 30 years.

Shericka Jackson claimed the bronze after a personal best of 49.47s – 1.10 behind Miller-Uibo.


Spanish sprint hurdler Orlando Ortega was handed a dramatic bronze medal reprieve a day after a falling rival ruined his final.

The Cuba-born athlete, who took silver in the 110 metres hurdles at the 2016 Olympics, was in contention for a top-three finish on Wednesday when Jamaican Omar McLeod, racing in the lane to his left, began to hit hurdles and crashed to the deck.

A fourth-placed finish was the best the 28-year-old could manage in the circumstances, but the IAAF took a sympathetic view and awarded a second bronze to Ortega.


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