British hope Lynsey Sharp was distraught after she exited the women’s 800 metres on the opening day of the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Doha.
She was the fourth-best ranked in the whole field, yet seemed to lose the pace on the home straight and finished fourth in her heat.
The Scot’s time of two minutes 3.57 seconds was also not enough to seal a fastest losers’ spot as only the top three in every heat earn an automatic place in the next round.
The 29-year-old was tipped to medal because of world champion Caster Semenya’s absence, but she was left in shock after failing to get through
World indoor bronze medallist in the 800 metres Shelayna Oskan-Clarke impressed as she finished second in her heat and fellow Brit Alexandra Bell pushed herself to finish third in her heat.
In the build-up to the championships, much has been made of the heat in Doha. This was felt no more than in the women’s marathon, which started at 23:59 local time. With temperatures reaching 32 degrees and with 73% humidity, a number of athletes pulled out before or during the race.
The pull-outs included Briton Charlotte Purdue, who this year recorded the third-fastest UK time in a marathon in London.
Ruth Chepngetich, who has the world leading time this year, pulled away from the leading group of four after a drink at 34 kilometres. The Kenyan held on to win the championships’ first gold over defending champion Rose Chelimo.
Despite the state-of-the-art technology providing air-conditioning to the Khalifa International Stadium, a number of women struggled during the 3,000 metre steeplechase heats.
Elizabeth Bird and Aimee Pratt both achieved personal bests in their heats, but there will be no Brits in the final. Kenyan Beatrice Chepkoech, who has the world leading time in the field of 8:55.58, looks to be in prime position for a gold medal in three days time.
Morgan Lake saw her world championship hopes dashed after she failed to clear 1.89 metres in the high jump. With her personal best being 1.97 metres, she was understandably frustrated.
While she cleared the earlier heights with ease, Lake did not use the full curve for her jump and chose to cut the corner for the height of 1.89 metres.