The first Diamond League meet of the season got underway in Doha, Qatar. Some of the sports biggest name such as Omar McLeod, Christian Taylor, Dafne Schippers and Almaz Ayana to mention just four were present in the Asian capital. This was the seventh time Doha were kicking off the Diamond League, which saw 12 World Leads happen on the night.
100m lives up to expectations
The 100m was one of the standout events and it didn't fail to live to expectations. US Champion Tori Bowie won the race in a time of 10.80, making it a meeting record and the world lead.
Dutch girl Dafne Schippers finished the race in second, while Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica finished in third. Schippers was edged by 0.03 seconds, which meant Bowie equaled her best result from the 2014 season.
Ibarguen and Rojas put on a show
The Women's Triple Jump saw two South American's go head-to-head in the first Diamond League meet. Caterine Ibarguen, defeated the world indoor champion Yulimar Rojas jumping beyond 15 metres.
Ibarguen took an early lead with a jump of 14.77m, but Rojas was steadily improving and took control with a 14.79m jump, a Venezuelan record. Ibarguen fouled in the fourth round, but came back in the fifth as she jumped a massive 15.04m, a world leader which set the bar high in the early season meet. Rojas with her fifth attempt came close with a 14.92m jump, but the Colombian held on and won the first meet.
Kazakh Olga Rypakova finished behind in third place with a jump of 14.61.
In the men's event, the stand out American Christian Taylor took the Doha crown with a 17.23m jump, while Chinese world indoor champion Bin Dong came second jumping 17.07m and Alexis Copella ended third with a 16.98m jump.
Morris wows crowd equaling Diamond League record
Sandi Morris of the USA blew away the rest of the field in the Pole Vault Event. The 23-year-old equaled the Diamond League record by vaulting to 4.83m and took command of the world lead. Swiss Nichole Buchler increased the National record to 4.78m as she took second, while Katerina Stefanidi of Greece finished in third.
Webb and Merritt of USA win 200m and 400m
Ameer Webb looked convincing in the 200m as he won in a time of 19.85, which turned out to be a personal best. Alonso Edward's of Panama came second and Qatari Femi Ogunode finished third.
LaShwawn Merritt claimed victory in the 400m with a time of 44.41. He seemed to be ahead of the pack come halfway point, but during the home stretch the 29-year-old seemed to be slowing down, but fought off any attack from the rest of the pack. On his inside Machel Cedenio of Trinidad and Tobago was second in 44.68 with Qatar’s Abdallelah Haroun, to his outside, third in 44.81.
Omar McLeod won the season’s first high level face-off in the 110m hurdles, edging his Jamaican compatriot Hansle Parchment 13.05 to 13.10. Orlando Ortega of Spain finished third in 13.12.
Asbel Kiprop, to no surprise won the 1500m. As the bell rang for the final lap, the rest of the competition were nowhere to be seem leaving them for dead. He finished with a time of 3:32.15, another world leader. Teammates Elijah Manangoi (3:33.67) and Silas Kiplagat (3:33.86) followed.
Almaz Ayana’s victory in the 3000m was even more dominant. The reigning world 5000m champion from Ethiopia was never threatened and closed with a 65-second final lap to win in 8:23.11.
Kenyan Mercy Cherono was second in 8:26.36 and Gelete Burka of Ethiopia in third 8:26.49.
In the 800m, another world leader came courtsey of former world champion Caster Semenya in the 800m. At the bell, she was lagging behind in third, but by the half way mark she was in third ready to make her move. When it came to the home straight that is when the South African powered home to win the race. Ethiopian Habitam Alemu came in second 1:59.14 and Kenyan Eunice Sum finished in third 1:59.74.
Brooks, Malachowski and Viljoen win the throwing events
Tia Brooks dominated the shot put event. The 25-year-old reached her second personal best of the night in the third round with a score of 19.48m
The battle between Piotr Malachowski and Philip Milanov wasn't to go unnoticed. The pair seemed to be exchanging places at the top until the fifth round when the Belgian athlete took control and scored 67.26m, which was national record. However, the Polish athlete had an answer and countered with a 68.03m toss with his final attempt to take the season opener.
South African Victor Hogan was third at 65.59m.
His fellow countrywoman and African holder, Sunette Viljoen won the women's Javelin event with a 65.14m best, nearly two metres ahead of Australian Kathryn Mitchell who reached 63.25. Asian record holder Lu Huihui of China finished third place.
In the high jump, 2012 silver medalist Erik Kynard took top honours for the USA as he jumped 2.33m, which was another world leader.China’s Zhang Guowei was second at 2.31m. Home favourite and local hero, Mtaz Essa Barshim failed to please the crowd as he bowed out early missing three chances at 2.29m to finish down in seventh place.
On the track, Eilidh Doyle, the 400m European Champion, was competing for the first time as a married woman and life begin great as she came home in first place with a score of 54:53, another world leader. She was way ahead of the world indoor champion Bahraini Kemi Adekoya who finished with in 54:87.