Saturday 19 October 2019

I didn't have extra gear, admits Healy after failing to fire in heat

Ireland's Phil Healy. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
Ireland's Phil Healy. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Cathal Dennehy

It was a long way from what she wanted, what she expected, and at the end of it Phil Healy was left with nothing but questions.

Ireland's fastest woman may have come to Doha for her first World Championships off an interrupted preparation - a broken foot in April costing her two months' training at a critical point of the year - but all the same she offered no excuses after failing to fire in yesterday's 200m heats.

Having run 23.04 for 200m to qualify for the championships in April, and 23.33 to win the national title in July, she could only manage 23.56 here to finish fifth of six athletes in her heat.

"I definitely thought I had a much quicker time in me, I thought I was in PB shape and it obviously didn't click," she said.

"I had a really good session on Friday and I executed the bend well, I just didn't have the extra gear to take on the other girls. I'm disappointed."

Healy appeared to be given an arduous task in qualifying from her heat, drawn alongside former world champion Dafne Schippers and Marie-Josee Ta Lou, who won 100m bronze here on Sunday.

Decent But when they both withdrew with injury, the path was clear for Healy to seize one of the three automatic qualification spots. She made a decent start, but when she tried to reel in her rivals off the bend the effort was counter-productive, the deficit growing as she reached the finish in 23.56.

The race was won by Anthonique Strachan of the Bahamas in 22.86.

She was soon able to step back and see the season as a whole - to appreciate how she had to rebuild herself from the ground up after that broken metatarsal.

"Everything felt slow, hard, so it knocked the momentum of the season," she said.

"When you don't have consistency it's hard but we learned a lot of things, we explored a lot of new avenues we can take into next year. I'm grateful to be out here competing against the world's best."

Elsewhere last night, Karsten Warholm claimed his second successive world title in the men's 400m hurdles, clocking 47.42 to beat American Rai Benjamin (47.66).

There was a thrilling conclusion to the men's 5,000m as Norwegian teenager Jakob Ingebrigtsen came up short in his bid to half the African dominance, Muktar Edris of Ethiopia defending his title in 12:58.85.

Irish Independent

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