Jamaica’s 18-year-old sensation, Jaydon Hibbert, made a remarkable impression during his Diamond League debut by securing a commendable second-place finish in the men’s triple jump event in Monaco on Friday.
Hibbert’s best effort was 17.66m, marking his first loss in the triple jump event this season. The top honours went to Hugues Fabrice Zango of Burkina Faso, a Tokyo Olympics bronze medallist and two-time world championships medal winner, who clinched victory with an effort of 17.70m. Zango’s winning leap came on the very last jump of the competition, edging him just four centimetres ahead of Hibbert.
Yasser Mohammed Triki of Algeria briefly held the lead after a season-best jump of 17.32m in the third round. However, he ultimately settled for third place as Hibbert and Zango delivered outstanding performances.
Hibbert is the current world leader, boasting an impressive 17.87m mark.
Akeem Blake, the fastest Jamaican male this season with 9.89, clocked 10 seconds flat (0.6m/s) for third in the men’s 100m. Jamaica’s 2011 world champion Yohan Blake registered a season-best 10.01 for fourth place while Kishane Thompson, the third Jamaican in the field was fifth in 10.04.
African record-holder Ferdinand Omanyala (9.92) defied a late challenge from fellow African Letsile Tebogo (9.93) to win and declared his intent to claim the world title in Budapest.
Earlier, Jamaica’s Ackelia Smith could only manage seventh in the women’s long jump with an effort of 6.70m.
Italy’s rising star Larissa Iapichino snatched victory in the final round , leaping a personal best of 6.95m to claim her third Diamond League victory of the season and press her claims as a genuine contender for the World Championships.
US champion Tara Davis-Woodhall had been languishing back in eighth place until the fifth round, when she produced her best jump of the competition, 6.88m, to propel herself into the lead ahead of the top three jump-off.
The 21-year-old Iapichino also made a last-gasp 6.81m leap in the fifth round to join Davis-Woodhall and world indoor champion Ivana Vuleta (6.86m) in the top three. But the Italian was the only one to improve in the sixth round to secure the win.