Jamaica ended the 10th and final IAAF World Under-18 Championships at Kasarani Stadium in Nairobi, Kenya yesterday with eight medals adding three more on yesterday’s final day of competition.
They won a gold and a bronze in the girls’ 100m hurdles, and a silver in the mixed 4x400m relays in front of yet another reported full house of 50,000.
It was a commendable performance from the Jamaican team that got into the east African capital last Sunday after 48 hours of travelling, capturing three gold medals, two silver and three bronze, finishing seventh on both the medals and points table.
Also yesterday, Annia Ashley finished 10th in the girls long jump with a wind-aided 5.82m (2.9m/s).
Jamaica participated in all 10 renewals of the championships. Including the eight medals won this past week, they have won a total of 58, having won 50 coming into this championships: 19 gold, 15 silver and 16 bronze.
South Africa topped the medals table in Nairobi with 11, including five gold, three silver and three bronze, just edging China who also had 11 medals including five gold, two silver and four bronze. Cuba finished third with eight medals — five gold, two silver and a bronze.
Host nation Kenya won the most medals, 15 with four gold, seven silver and four bronze, while Germany won 13 medals.
Britany Anderson performed up to expectations by winning the gold medal in a wind-aided 12.72 seconds (4.1 m/s). France’s Cyrena Samba-Mayela, who came into the championships as the second-ranked athlete, took silver in 12.80 seconds, while Jamaica’s Daszay Freeman finished third in 13.09 seconds.
It was the first time that Jamaica were winning two medals in the event but the second gold medal after Yanique Thompson won in 2013 in Donetsk, Ukraine, where she set the championship record and World Youth Best 12.94 seconds.
It was also a clean sweep of the sprint hurdles for Jamaica as Dejour Russell had taken the boys 110m hurdles in a championship record 13.04 seconds earlier.
The mixed 4x400m relay team made two changes to the team that ran in the semi-finals and just missed the gold, beaten by Brazil who were winning their only gold of the five-day championships.
The Jamaican team of Shaqueena Foote, Anthony Cox, Sanique Walker and boys 400m gold medallist Antonio Watson clocked 3 minutes 22.23 seconds as Brazil won with 3:21.71 seconds, with South Africa, having three individual gold medallists in their team, taking the bronze in 3:24.45 seconds.
Cox, who replaced Tyrese Reid, ran a brilliant second leg after taking the baton from Foote well behind in third place and handed over to Walker just behind the Brazilians.
Walker, the 400m hurdles silver medallist who replaced Joanne Reid from the previous round failed to make up any ground, and Watson did enough to ensure the silver medal was secured. (Paul Reid/ Jamaica Observer)