TRINIDAD AND Tobago’s Tyra Gittens survived a nervy start to seal an impressive entry into the women’s long jump final at the Tokyo Olympics on Saturday night (TT time).
The 23-year-old executed her second effort flawlessly, leaping 6.72 metres, which eventually saw her into the final. Her mark came 0.03m short of an automatic qualifying spot.
Gittens, who distinguished herself in heptathlon during the 2021 season, looked to have sealed fourth spot but for a late effort from Abigail Airozuro of Great Britain who registered a season-best 6.75m on her third attempt.
Gittens, however, did enough in the end to finish among the best non-automatic finalists.
She was the first athlete in long jump action but would have been far from impressed with her first attempt, leaping just 6.12m.
USA’s Brittney Reece won Group A with 6.86m, followed by her compatriot Taras Davis with 6.85m. Sweden Khaddi Sagnia also edged the automatic qualifying mark, scoring 6.72m.
In Group B, Serbia’s ivana Spanovic (7.0m) and Germany’s Malaika Mihambo (6.8m), one of the favourites for gold, both leaped season-best efforts, followed by Chantel Malone of the British Virgin Islands and Nigeria’s Ese Brumi with 6.82m and 6.76m, respectively.
The final will take place on Monday night (TT time).