Today’s women discus final seemed to be a German sweep on paper at the U23 European Championships in Tallinn, Estonia. And turned out to be real after the competition was over. Shanice Craft takes gold with a new season best of 63.83m, Anna Rüh, probably not satisfied taking silver with 61.27m. The German clean sweep will be completed by Kristin Pudenz, who threw 59.94m. Daria Zabawski could not ruin the discus sweep with her best attempt of 59.06m, taking 4th place.
During the qualification Daria Zabawska surprised the Germans with a big new personal best of 60.23m to take the lead. After Daria being 1st in the qualification, the German trio took 2nd, 3rd and 4th place with all first round efforts to make the final. During the final there should be a change in order according to the German trio.
The German trio showed what they are capable off during the first round. Anna Rüh opened with 59.04m which was 1 centimeter further than her qualifying round attempt. The Polish discus thrower Daria, who lead the qualifying the day before opened with 58.38m to secure the 3rd place after round 1. The best of the first attempt was the German Shanice Craft. Her throw fley directly over the 60m mark and was measured 61.17m. Kristin Pudenz does not seem to like the wet weather opening with a rather weak attempt of 54.72m.
During the second round the lead changed to Anna Rüh. She took over with her attempt of 61.27m leading by 10 centimeters in front of Shanice Craft. Kristin Pudenz improved during the 2nd round with 56.21m to secure the 4th place for now. Daria also improved to 59.06m which is not enough to get silver or the gold. Shanice Craft could not response Anna’s leading throw with her second attempt of 56.56m.
Unfortunately, Kristin Pudenz did not improve any further, she fouled her third attempt. In order to achieve a German sweep she would at least need to throw over 59m. Same as Kristin Pudenz, Daria also fouled her 3rd attempt. Anna Rüh is not quite happy about her 3rd attempt either, even though it went over 60m (60.57m). Her goal seems to be much further because she knows Shanice Craft could anytime take the lead back having only 10 centimeters between the two of them. At that what is happening when Shanice Craft is going into the circle. She just went beyond her first attempt in round three. The regained the lead with 61.69m. In order to qualify for the final op 8, 50.50m were required.
Next to the 4 throwers mentioned above, Lidia Augustyniak (54.75m), Natalya Shirobokova (54.31m), Heini Järventausta (51.24m) and Karolina Makul (50.50m) made the final of the top 8 throwers.
No improvement for Kristin Pudenz with her 2nd foul in round 4 and also Daria Zabawska did not improve in her fourth attempt with 56.80m. Anna Rüh still in 2nd place needs to level up her throws but failed to do so in round 4. She threw 59.63m to be consistent but not enough to take back the lead. Shanice Craft exploded in round 4 with another increase of the lead. Shanice threw 62.89m, leading now by over 1 1/2 meters.
During the 5th round Kristin Pudenz made the German sweep perfect (for now). She improved by 3 meters and takes the 3rd position with her throw of 59.85m. Anna Rüh is still trying hit the discus right but she failed to do so with her 5th round attempt of 60.15m. Also Shanice did not improve in round 5, but she underlined her ambition for the gold medal with another strong throw of 62.65m. Daria Zabawsko did not respond to Kristin Pudenz throw and fouled her 5th attempt. Will there be a German sweep in the end?!
Now Kristin Pudenz seemed to be on fire. Her recent throw kind of pushed her for the last attempt to improve even further to 59.94m. Daria Zabawska again could not respond to Kristin Pudenz throw and takes the 4th place. Anna Rüh also not in her best shape is not able o respond to Shanice Craft’s lead, by fouling her last attempt. Shanice Craft’s best attempt was the last round throw of a new season best, 63.83m! The German clean sweep is perfect.
“I did not want to become 4th place again like last time in 20013. I am so happy that this worked out as planned. It did not look very good after the first two rounds but then I talked to our national team team psychologist, Tanja Damaske, and she knew what to say to me to calm me down and comeback with a swing. This was really important to me”