London 2012 athletics watch: Jessica Ennis leaps another hurdle in comeback

Happy: Jessica Ennis

Happy: Jessica Ennis

Jessica Ennis ran the fourth fastest sprint hurdles of her career on Sunday, restoring belief for any who doubted her genuine pretensions to an Olympic gold medal following weeks in rehabilitation.

The damp, dismal streets of Manchester may be far removed from high summer in Stratford and third in the 100metres hurdles at the Poweraid Great City Games is hardly a meaningful addition to a heptathlete’s c.v.

But a time of 12.88sec was just what the world champion needed after seven ‘definitely worrying and very stressful’ weeks.

Ennis has been recovering from a sore tendon. ‘I just didn’t know where I was after the injury so to run 12.88sec shows I am in good shape,’ said Ennis.

‘One massive positive to take from the day is that my ankle feels good. It’s a bit of a relief to be back.’

The 25-year-old also competed in the 150m, finishing second. A more serious test for Ennis comes in Austria on the
last weekend of this month when she competes in her first heptathlon since she won the European title last August.

But her coach Toni Minichiello warned fans: ‘Don’t be expecting too much of her. It’s come a bit early.’

Andy Turner, another of Britain’s European champions, extended his unbeaten start to the year over the 110m hurdles.

The 30-year-old claimed a second win over America’s double Olympic and triple World Championship silver medallist Terrence Trammell in 13.42sec. 


Nickel Ashmeade, the latest Jamaican sprint sensation, wowed crowds for the second weekend in a row, improving his 100m best by a quarter of a second. The 21-year-old ran 10.5sec in Puerto Rico on Saturday.

In Tucson, Arizona, America’s English Gardner, 19, ran a US junior record of 11.03sec. Only two teenagers have ever run faster.


Haile Gebrselassie selected Britain’s Chris Thompson as the man for the future of the 10,000metres on Sunday after beating him by 11 seconds at the Bupa Great Manchester Run.

The Ethiopian legend has not lost in a 10km road race for 17 years.

Look out behind you: Chris Thompson (centre) trails Haile Gebrselassie

Look out behind you: Chris Thompson (centre) trails Haile Gebrselassie

‘I didn’t expect Thompson to be so close. This boy, amazing. I imagine in the future he will be the one,’ said Gebrselassie.

Britain’s Helen Clitheroe, 37, continued her late career flourish, smashing her personal best by 30sec to win the women’s race in 31min 45sec.


Jeremy Warriner, America’s triple Olympic champion, pulled up in a 400m race in Tucson, Arizona, complaining of back pain.


Top Britons, back from training in California, compete at a meeting in Loughborough on Sunday.

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