American Chase Ealey successfully defended her women’s shot put crown at the World Athletics Championships on Saturday, winning her second successive gold medal. China’s Gong Lijiao also made history by winning a record eighth straight individual medal.
Ealey, who used a new technique, achieved her season-best throw in her fifth attempt, securing the gold with a 20.43 meters effort. Canada’s Sarah Mitton took the silver with a throw of 20.08 meters.
Gong, a nine-time global championships competitor and the 2017 and 2019 world champion, aimed for her eighth consecutive medal. She clinched the bronze with a throw of 19.69 meters, narrowly beating Portugal’s Auriol Dongmo on countback.
Ealey expressed her satisfaction with the victory, especially considering the challenges she faced in perfecting her technique. She stated, “It’s even more satisfying than last year because this year I’ve struggled to get my technique sorted and get everything right. So for it to come together at the right time is perfect.”
Ealey had concerns about having the qualification round and the final on the same day. However, she quickly established herself as the favorite with an impressive 20.35-meter throw on her first attempt.
Gong’s position was briefly threatened when Dongmo matched her best mark, but the Chinese athlete responded with a 19.67-meter effort to secure her place on the podium. Gong’s bronze medal marked her fourth individual medal at the world championships, adding to her two golds and two silvers. She became the only athlete to win eight consecutive individual medals, surpassing Kenya’s Ezekiel Kemboi’s record of seven medals in the 3,000 meters steeplechase.
Ealey’s compatriot Maggie Ewen, the world leader in shot put, entered the competition as a strong favorite for a medal. However, she finished in sixth place with a throw of 19.51 meters.
Reflecting on her victory, Ealey shared an emotional moment with her mother, saying, “I started crying with my mum. I ran to her and she started crying so I started crying. And now my face is a mess!”
In conclusion, Chase Ealey successfully defended her women’s shot put crown, while Gong Lijiao made history with her eighth consecutive individual medal. Both athletes showcased their skills and determination in the competition.
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