11 Agosto, 2017

Birmingham: Francis and Felix set for rematch

  • © Errol Anderson

London 2017 medallists Phyllis Francis, Salwa Eid Naser and Allyson Felix will all return to action in the 400m at the Birmingham Diamond League next week. Emerging British middle-distance star Kyle Langford will also compete.

London 2017 world 400m champion Phyllis Francis of the USA, will go head-to-head with silver and bronze medallists Salwa Eid Naser and fellow American Allyson Felix, at the Müller Grand Prix Birmingham on Sunday 20 August.

 

Francis clocked a personal best of 49.92 seconds to take the gold medal, ahead of 19-year-old Bahraini athlete Naser and defending champion Felix, in a dramatic 400m final in the London Stadium on Wednesday.

All three medallists will line up at the Alexander Stadium at the end of next week, for a rematch over one lap, at the IAAF Diamond League meeting, which will be the finale of an outstanding season of global athletics events in the UK and include Mo Farah’s last ever track race on home soil.

Felix’s bronze medal winning run means she’s equalled the record for the most World Championship medals won by a female athlete (14), set by legendary sprinter Merlene Ottey. The four-time Olympic and nine-time world gold medallist, could surpass that total this weekend and become the most decorated female athlete in World Championships history, if she wins medal in the relay.

Felix, said: “I’ve competed many times in Birmingham and the meets there are always fantastic, so I think the Müller Grand Prix Birmingham will be the perfect event to wrap up my summer of competitions in the UK.”

She added: “The meet is just a week after the end of the World Championships, so a lot of new medallists from London will be competing and it will be a real party atmosphere. I know the crowd will give everyone a great welcome, as they always do, so it should be fun.”
London 2017 finalist Kyle Langford will also be at the Birmingham Diamond League, and Britain’s newest middle distance star will be looking to put on another spectacular show when he races new world silver and bronze medallists Adam Kszczot and Kipyegon Bett, plus a top-class field, at the Alexander Stadium next week.

Langford clocked a personal best of 1:45.25 after charging down the final straight at the IAAF World Championships in the London Stadium last night, but just missed out on the bronze medal by four hundredths of a second.

In addition to Kszczot and Bett, the 2015 European junior champion will be up against London 2012 Olympic 800m silver medallist Nijel Amos, three-time 1500m world champion Asbel Kiprop and British 800m champion Eliot Giles, at the Alexander Stadium on 20 August.

Langford said: “It’s been an amazing season for me and it was a dream to reach the World Championships final. I could never have imagined making the final at my second World Championships, let alone being so close to a medal, so I will have a lot to celebrate when I race at the Müller Grand Prix Birmingham.”

He added: “It would be fantastic to follow up my performance in London with a good run in Birmingham, but there’s a strong line-up and it will be a tough race.”