© Copyright – 2022 – Athletics Illustrated

Nearly 2000 athletes will gather at Eugene, Oregon’s Hayward Field for the 2022 World Athletics Championships starting July 15.

Athletics Australia is sending a strong team to compete at the 18th event. Four athletes who may compete for a medal specialise in the 1500m distance Jessica Hull, Linden Hall, Oliver Hoare, and Stewart McSWeyn. Also, Peter Bol in the 800m will be interesting to watch.

Jessica Hull and Linden Hall

Jessica Hull is one of the lead athletes ready to take on the world in two events, the 1500-metre and 5000m distances. The 25-year-old, Pete Julien-coached athlete based in Oregon has run the 1500m as fast as 3:58.81, which is the Australian and Oceania record. Her 5000m personal best is 14:43.80, also the national record of the four records that she owns in outdoor track. She owns three more indoor records.

Her best chance is in the 1500m event. Hull is ranked 12th in the world and is expected to make the final, where anything can and usually does happen. It is likely that no one can beat Kenyan Faith Kipyegon who owns two Olympic gold medals and one World Championships gold in the event. She owns the Kenyan national record at 3:51.07. Netherlands athlete Sifan Hassan may be the one to usurp Kipyegon, depending on her fitness, however, little has been heard from her since she dropped jaws with her Tokyo Olympic performances winning two gold medals in the 5000m and 10,000m and a bronze in the 1500m.

Linden Hall, having finished sixth in Tokyo is just as much of a threat. Her best may be a second slower, but tactics can very much dictate at the global competition level as he demonstrated last summer. The 31-year-old owns a best of 3:59.01.

At least one of the athletes ranked above her on the World Athletics global ranking system, Canada’s Gabriela DeBues-Stafford, is out with an injury. Hull has a chance if her tactics are flawless.

Oliver Hoare and Stewart McSweyn

The best chances for a medal among the Australian men may be between Oliver Hoare and Stewart McSweyn. Although they have demonstrated the ability to run with the best in the 1500m event, it is the final 200m where these athletes need to improve for a chance at a medal.

McSweyn is ranked fourth in the world at this time. Predictably, this gets him into the final and a legitimate chance at a medal. The 27-year-old finished seventh in Tokyo, so he has top international experience. His personal best over the distance is 3:29.51 from 2021. The only concern was that during the Stockholm Diamond League meet he led the middle part of the races, but was outkicked by three athletes. Tactically, he may want to break out whatever kick he may possess not from a lead position.

Hoare is ranked one back on the global list. His best may be 3:32.66 more than three seconds back of his compatriot, the 25-year-old owns the national and Oceania record for the mile at 3:47.48, which is considered a better performance than his 1500m best. Expect him to run sub-3:30 in the future, perhaps that will happen in Eugene next week.

A key issue for McSweyn may be some apparent breathing issues that may have been caused by a Covid shot.

Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigsten is unlikely to be beaten in Eugene. He is ranked number one for good reason. The 21-year-old is the defending Olympic champion and owns a best of 3:28.32, which is the Norwegian and European record. If someone is to beat Ingebrigtsen it will be a performance by East Africans Timothy Cheruiyot or Abel Kipsang and it will likely come from some serious kick over the final 200m.

And…

Not to be missed is 28-year-old 800m runner, Nagmeldin Peter Bol, who owns a best of 1:44.00 and competed very well in Tokyo finishing in fourth place. He is the national and Oceania record holder. Of all the events in athletics, perhaps the 800m final is the most competitive and difficult to predict. Bol could finish first, or not even make the final — it is one of the most exciting events to watch.

Interestingly Kelly Ruddick is 49 years old and will compete in the 35K racewalk. She is the oldest to compete in the World Championships. Currently, women over 40 are competing well in the marathon distance. Perhaps Ruddick will continue to shape perspectives on age, with a strong performance.

Canada’s Marco Arop on July 3rd ran a near personal best at 1:43.61 in Edmonton to set the tone leading to the championships. The 23-year-old’s best is 1:43.26. Kenya’s Ferguson Rotich will be tough to beat. The 32-year-old owns a best of 1:42.54 and earned silver in Tokyo. However, currently, ranked number one is Emmanuel Korir of Kenya, he is the Olympic champion from Tokyo and owns a best of 1:42.05.

The Australian Team for the 2022 World Athletics Championships

WOMEN

100m                                Bree Masters 
200m                                Jacinta Beecher, Ella Connolly 
800m                                Catriona Bisset, Tess Kirsopp-Cole, Claudia Hollingsworth 
1500m                              Georgia Griffith, Linden Hall, Jessica Hull 
5000m                              Natalie Rule, Rose Davies, Jessica Hull 
Marathon                        Sarah Klein 
100m Hurdles                 Liz Clay, Celeste Mucci, Michelle Jenneke 
400m Hurdles                  Sarah Carli 
3000m Steeplechase       Brielle Erbacher, Amy Cashin, Cara Feain-Ryan 
20km Walk                      Jemima Montag, Rebecca Henderson 
35km Walk                      Kelly Ruddick 
High Jump                       Nicola Olyslagers, Eleanor Patterson 
Pole Vault                       Nina Kennedy 
Long Jump                       Brooke Buschkuehl, Samantha Dale 
Hammer Throw              Alexandra Hulley 
Javelin Throw                  Kelsey-Lee Barber, Mackenzie Little, Kathryn Mitchell. 

MEN

100m                               Rohan Browning, Jake Doran 
200m                               Aidan Murphy, Calab Law 
400m                               Steven Solomon, Alex Beck 
800m                               Nagmeldin Peter Bol, Joseph Deng 
1500m                             Oliver HoareStewart McSweyn, Matthew Ramsden 
5000m                             Ky Robinson, Matthew Ramsden, Jack Rayner
10000m                           Jack Rayner
110m Hurdles                  Nick Hough, Chris Douglas 
3000m Steeplechase       Ed Trippas, Ben Buckingham 
20km Walk                      Kyle Swan, Declan Tingay, Rhydian Cowley 
35km Walk                      Rhydian Cowley, Carl Gibbons 
High Jump                       Brandon Starc, Joel Baden, Yual Reath 
Pole Vault                       Kurtis Marschall 
Long Jump                     Chris Mitreveski, Henry Frayne 
Discus Throw                  Matthew Denny 
Javelin Throw                  Cameron McEntyre, Cruz Hogan 
Decathlon                        Cedric Dubler, Ash Moloney, Daniel Golubovic 

All details on the Eugene World Athletics Championships are available here>>

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