Diamond League 2011: Athletes to watch in Birmingham

Diamond League 2011

Venue:
Birmingham
Date:
Sunday, 10 July
Coverage:
Watch live from 1630 BST on BBC Red Button and 1730 on BBC2 - all on the BBC Sport website (UK users only)
Get involved:
Use Twitter via hashtag #BBCAthletics
Asafa Powell wins in Lausanne

Jamaica's Asafa Powell targets the fastest 100m ever run on British soil, while Mo Farah, Philips Idowu and Dai Greene lead the domestic challenge as the Diamond League arrives in the UK for the first time in 2011.

Full entry lists and timetable on the official website

1804 BST: Men's 400m hurdles

Welshman Dai Greene enhanced his world title credentials by winning a Diamond League race for the first time in Lausanne 10 days prior to this meeting.

The European and Commonwealth champion faces a rematch in Birmingham, against Puerto Rican Javier Culson, former Olympic champion Felix Sanchez and Greene's training partner Jack Green, who was an encouraging fourth in Lausanne. There is also the added threat of world number one Bershawn Jackson, who has won nine of his 10 previous races against Greene.

1835 BST: Men's triple jump

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Tamgho enjoying rivalry with Phillips

World and European champion Phillips Idowu renews his rivalry with Frenchman Teddy Tamgho, who beat him in Lausanne with a sensational performance.

Tamgho's winning leap of 17.91m was the sixth time he has jumped farther than Idowu's personal best of 17.81m, although the Briton still leads in head-to-head competition, with six wins to Tamgho's three.

Marian Oprea of Romania and Cuban pair Alexis Copello and David Girat have all jumped in excess of 17.60m, although they are some way short of that form so far this season.

1850 BST: Women's 1500m

The women's 1500m has failed to ignite this season, but the quality on show in Birmingham could result in the first sub-four-minute race of the summer. Double world champion Maryam Yusuf Jamal started the season well with wins in Rome and Hengelo, but was only 10th on her last outing in Lausanne. Ethiopia's Gelete Burka beat Jamal in Oregon a month ago and is second quickest in the field on paper.

The domestic challenge is led by world silver medallist Lisa Dobriskey, whose 10th-place finish in Rome on 26 May is her only race so far in another injury-interrupted year. Resurgent 37-year-old Helen Clitheroe won the European indoor 3000m title in March and has since set personal best times over three different distances, while Hannah England won her first 1500m outing of the summer in Ireland last weekend.

1922 BST: Women's 400m

Sanya Richards-Ross
Richards-Ross has struggled since her return from injury

British Olympic champion Christine Ohuruogu remains injured, but the 400m field in Birmingham includes four of the finalists from the 2009 World Championships - including gold medallist Sanya Richards-Ross. The American has admitted finding her comeback from injury more difficult than expected and has failed to win an international one-lap race in five attempts this season.

She did, however, set a season's best of 50.61 seconds when runner-up to Diamond League leader Amantle Montsho in Lausanne last time out. Montsho, the Commonwealth champion, is bidding for a fourth consecutive Diamond League victory and has not finished outside of the top two all year.

World Championship finalists Novlene Williams-Mills and Debbie Dunn are more than capable of running under 50 seconds, while British hopes rest with American-born newcomer Shana Cox.

1932 BST: Men's 5000m

Mo Farah
Farah set a UK and European record over 10,000m in June

Mo Farah has been unstoppable since moving to the USA to work under marathon legend Alberto Salazar earlier this year. Farah's recent successes include the European indoor 3000m title, a debut half-marathon victory in New York, and a European record over 10,000m at the Eugene leg of the Diamond League series.

Farah is racing over 5000m for the first time since he broke the European indoor record in Birmingham five months ago. His opponents include Ethiopia's world number one Imane Merga, Doha 3000m winner Yenew Alamirew and Dejen Gebremeskel, who was the last athlete to beat Farah back in February.

1950 BST: Men's 100m final (heats at 1741)

Could this meeting provide the fastest 100m ever run in Britain? That prospect is plausible following Asafa Powell's recent world-leading time of 9.78 seconds in Lausanne, a mere one hundredth outside of his record run in Gateshead five years ago.

Powell heads a superb line-up on Sunday. Fellow Jamaican Michael Frater clocked a personal best of 9.88 seconds when runner-up to Powell in Lausanne, while younger compatriot Nesta Carter was fourth in that race and is also the fourth quickest sprinter in history.

American Michael Rodgers has been consistent all season and set a lifetime best of 9.85 seconds when second at the Eugene Diamond League meeting. The field also includes Olympic silver medallist Richard Thompson and local favourite Mark Lewis-Francis. The Birmingham-born sprinter will need a rapid improvement on his time of 10.53 seconds when he finished last at a meeting in France last weekend.

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