Hodgkinson wins 800m gold as Britain match record medal haul

Teenager Keely Hodgkinson won 800m gold for Great Britain at the European Indoor Athletics Championships in Torun, Poland as the team won seven medals to cap an excellent tournament.

The Brit, who hails from Wigan, held off home favourite Joanna Jozwik to win in 2:03.88 after leading throughout, securing GB’s second gold medal of the championships.

Before the tournament, Great Britain & Northern Ireland were believed to be targeting six to 10 medals at this tournament, but they finished with 12 – equalling their record tally set at Glasgow 2019.

Their total haul of two gold, four silver and six bronze was enough for a third place overall finish in the medal table, behind the Netherlands with four goal, one silver and two bronze, and Portugal who secured three golds.

Hodgkinson turned 19 on Wednesday and celebrated by winning her second major senior title after her national outdoor win last year.

She said: “I don’t think about the pressure because I’m only 19.

“You’ve just got to believe in yourself and not be intimidated by the older girls who may have a lot more experience than you.”

Pole Angelika Cichocka edged out Hodgkinson’s compatriot Ellie Baker to take bronze.

In the men’s 800m, Jamie Webb won bronze behind Polish duo Patryk Dobek, who won the race, and Mateusz Borkowski.

The 2019 silver medallist finished with a time of one minute 46.95.

There was further British success in the women’s 60m hurdles, as sisters Cindy Sember and Tiffany Porter each picked up a medal.

Sember took silver as she finished with a time of 7.89s while Porter finished third in 7.92s.

Porter dipped at the right time to take the bronze medal ahead of Finn Nooralotta Neziri, while Sember was comfortable in second throughout.

Nadine Visser was the favourite going into the race, and the Dutch star did not disappoint as she won in 7.7s.

The silver medal for Sember caps off a remarkable comeback from a career-threatening ruptured Achilles injury, and Porter’s bronze was her first medal since giving birth to her daughter in 2019.

Porter said: “I’m pleased and grateful to be back.

“Hopefully, the family are proud.”

In the men’s final, Andrew Pozzi had to settle for silver as he was defeated by Frenchman Wilhelm Belocian.

The 27-year-old Brit, who is the reigning indoor World Champion, equalled his personal best with a time of 7.43s, but Belocian finished in 7.42s.

Pozzi said: “The better man won today. I’m a bit disappointed.

“I was doing well at the start, but lost a couple of steps in the middle.”

Team captain Jodie Williams won her second medal of the championships as Great Britain’s 4x400m team finished second behind the Netherlands in the relay.

The silver medals won by Williams and teammates Jessi Knight, Ama Pipi and Zoey Clark bettered the men’s team, as Joe Brier, Owen Smith, James Williams and Lee Thompson took bronze in their final.

Jakob Ingebrigsten became the only double individual goal medallist at the championships with a comfortable 3000m victory.

The Norwegian, 20, powered to the front in the final kilometre to finish with a new personal best of seven minutes 48.20s.

Ingebrigsten said: “This means a lot to me.

“I ran according to my plan and I am surprised my opponents let me do my own thing without interrupting me.”

Elsewhere, the Polish men’s 4x400m team were forced to withdraw after two members of the squad tested positive for Covid-19.

Check out the rest of SWL’s coverage here.

Related Articles