Home favourite Josh Kerr storms to 3,000m gold at World Indoor Championships

By Sports Desk March 02, 2024

Josh Kerr ended Scotland’s 31-year wait for a world indoor title and did so on home turf as he stormed to 3,000 metres gold in Glasgow.

Kerr powered away on the final lap to win comfortably in seven minutes 42.98 seconds, with defending champion Selemon Barega fading down the final straight as he was beaten to silver by American Yared Nuguse.

After disappointment for Laura Muir in the women’s 3,000m final earlier in the evening, Kerr’s victory sparked huge celebrations in the Emirates Arena.

“I think I burned more energy celebrating than I did in the race, which is a bit embarrassing,” Kerr, the world 1500m champion outdoors, said on BBC Sport. “This competition is so important.

“I’ve come to championships before not ready to have a real go at it and I feel I’ve let the UK audience down a bit in the way I’ve performed in front of them. It was really important to come here fit and ready to go and really execute.

“I came in without a solid plan, just really fluid. I wanted to make sure I wasn’t acting emotionally.

“I kept a patient head and then I could really send it with 400 metres to go.”

Muir set a season’s best time of 8mins 29.76secs, but that was only good enough for fifth as American Elle St Pierre took the win ahead of Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay.

St Pierre’s time of 8:20.87 was a World Indoor Championships record.

Jemma Reekie delighted her home crowd by cruising into the final of the women’s 800m with a “perfect” performance.

The 25-year-old Scot bided her time in second spot before passing Ethiopia’s Habitam Alemu on the final straight to win heat two in commanding fashion in a time of 1:58.28.

World number five Reekie progresses to Sunday’s medal race as the fastest qualifier across the two semi-finals and had a warning for her podium rivals.

She told BBC Sport: “(It was) perfect planning – you’d think Jon (Bigg, her coach) knew a bit about this sport by now. (It was) really good.

“I’m in really good shape. Obviously the final’s going to be really tough, but I want them to know if they’re coming to win on my track they’re going to have to work hard.

“I think it will be a fast one.”

At 19 years and 26 days, Italy’s Mattia Furlani became the youngest long jump medallist in World Indoor Championships history by claiming silver in the men’s event with a leap of 8.22m.

The teenager missed out on the title – to Greece’s Miltiadis Tentoglou – only on countback, with bronze going to Carey McLeod of Jamaica (8.21m).

Britain’s David King qualified for the semi-finals of the men’s 60m hurdles after clocking 7.64 but compatriot Tade Ojora failed to make the cut in his heat.

Amy Hunt fell short in the women’s 60m, finishing fifth in her heat in a time of 7.29.

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