IRELAND’S MARK ENGLISH (Letterkenny AC) reached the men’s 800m final on day five of the World Junior Track and Field Championships in Barcelona.
English was drawn in the third semi-final with only the top two guaranteed a place in the final. There were also two fastest loser spots up for grabs, which would ultimately prove important for English.
The race began with a flourish, as all the athletes bolted from the start line, jostling for a good position.
The Kenyan athlete Edwin Kiplagat Melly took control leading through the bell in a quick 52.98, with English in second. The Canadian athlete Brandon McBride subsequently gained the lead with an exuberant burst of speed.
In the last 100m, English demonstrated considerable tenacity to cross the line in fourth place (1.47.77). The effort meant he secured his qualification as one of the fastest losers.
The race was ultimately won by Kiplagat in a time of 1.47.08, and the Kenyan athlete will consequently join English in the final, which takes place at 6.25pm Irish time tomorrow.
Earlier in the programme, there was disappointment for Sarah Lavin (Emerald AC) in the semi-finals of the women’s 100m hurdles, when she fell at the second last hurdle and failed to finish the race.