World Athletics Championships: Dina-Asher Smith becomes Britain's first ever female world 100m medalist

Dina Asher-Smith with Shelley-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Marie-Josee Ta
Dina Asher-Smith with Shelley-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Marie-Josee Ta

Dina-Asher Smith became Britain's first female 100m medalist at a World Athletics Championships but she had to settle for silver behind the brilliant Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.

The triple European champion was bidding to become the nation's first ever female 100m champion at world or Olympic level - and indeed just the fourth of either sex behind Linford Christie (1992 & 1993), Allan Wells (1980) and Harold Abrahams (1924) - and rose to the occasion by lowering her British record to 10.83s.

It just wasn't quick enough to prevent two-time Olympic champion Fraser-Pryce storming to her fourth 100m world title (2009, '13, '15, '19) in a time of 10.71 as she became the oldest winner of this event at 32.

The Jamaican superstar, who missed the 2017 season due to pregnancy of her son Zyon, has also won two 100m Olympic crowns (2008 & 2012), a 200m world title (2013) and three 4x100m golds (2009, 2013 & 2015) during a glittering career.

Ivory Coast's Marie-Josee Ta Lou took bronze with reigning Olympic champion Elaine Thompson fourth.

It's a staggering historic achievement for the 23-year-old to soar to such a level considering the closest the nation has ever come to celebrating a female sprint champion were silver medals in the 1948 London Games (Dorothy Manley in the 100m and Audrey Williamson in the 200m) and 1960 Olympics (Dorothy Hyman in the 200m).

The best a British female sprinter has ever previously done in the world championships was the 200m bronze medal that Kathy Cook earned in the very first staging back in 1983 and until tonight, Team GB never had a 100m finalist.

While Asher-Smith isn't a world champion yet, her best chance to change that will come in the 200m - for which she is bookies favourite to win Wednesday night's final should she quality as expected.

No British man has ever won 200m gold in the Olympics or world championships either, so success will enhance her history-making exploits even further.

Asher-Smith's performance again underlines her supreme mental strength to deliver her best despite her relative inexperience having last year refused to buckle under the pressure by winning the European 100m, 200m and 4x100 titles last year.

She said: "It's great. I can tell you now, I achieved my target for the 100m this year. I wanted to come away with a medal of any colour despite all the headlines.

"I kept saying last year, the European golds are fantastic but it's different to transiting onto the global stage. I wanted to push myself into the top three women in the world.

"I didn't think on calibre I was there yet. So I still needed to take it up another notch and I'm very happy to have done that."

Asher-Smith also revealed she gave up sweets ahead of the Championships and the magnitude of her achievement was quickly sinking in.

She added: "No sweets for three weeks! It's been a lot of hard work. It's starting to kind of hit me a bit more because you lot (journalists) have known me since I've been like this big.

"I'm a competitor. So every race I go into I want to win. I want to run fast. Wherever I've got one leg hanging off or not."

It was also Great Britain's 100th medal at the World Championships since it started in 1983 and now she'll look to back another in the 200m, with the heats starting on Monday.

She added: "I know there are different people that are going to be stronger in each event and so one of them hopefully should be me in 200m.

"You never know how championships are going to pan out so I'm being honest. Championships are inherently unpredictable and it's just about how you handle the rounds how you recover."

Sunday night round-up

Meanwhile, Holly Bradshaw suffered heartbreak in the pole vault, which was won by neutral athlete Anzhelika Sidorova, by coming fourth.

The GB mixed 4x400m relay team of Rabah Yousif, Zoey Clark, Emily Diamond and Martyn Rooney also finished fourth in the final of the new format.

The USA took the title with Allyson Felix winning a record 12th World Championships title.

Earlier, Britain's Zharnel Hughes overcame his 100m disappointment by reaching the 200m semi-finals.

Hughes, who came sixth in the 100m final, clocked 20.24s while Adam Gemili ran a season's best of 20.06s and Miguel Francis posted 20.11s to progress.

Gemili failed to get beyond Saturday's semis in the 100m and afterwards tweeted a picture of the photo finish in his race, calling the result into question, after he came third but admitted it was rash.

"It was a bit of the heat of the moment, I should have taken 10 minutes and calmed down," he said.

"Someone showed it to me as I was getting on the bus and I went back to see the photo finish but they didn't let me in.

"I have to park it, it was a bit of an angry tweet. I tried to word it in a nice way but it was pure emotion."

World Athletics Links

Like what you've read?
Help your friends Know It All by sharing this article to your social media.

Most Read

Michael van Gerwen with the Champions League of Darts belt (Picture: Paddy Power on Twitter)1

MVG stuns Wright in final

Michael van Gerwen added the Paddy Power Champions League of Darts title to his astonishing CV as he overcame Peter Wright 11-10 in a thrilling final.

2

Monday's racing preview

He's A Keeper can provide the key to the Silver Tankard Stakes at Pontefract, according to Keith Hamer.

Sporting Life's NAP of the day3

Daily Nap: Dragon to fire

Matt Brocklebank focuses on the opening race at Pontefract as he picks out the Daily Nap from Monday's racing action.

Jurgen Klopp reacts during Liverpool's draw with Manchester United4

Klopp blasts United's system

Jurgen Klopp has expressed his frustration at Manchester United's defensive approach when they come up against Liverpool.

Marcus Rashford in action at Old Trafford5

Liverpool happier with point?

Tom McDermott analyses Manchester United's 1-1 draw with Liverpool at Old Trafford and wonders what ramifications the result will have for both sides for the rest of the season.

Most Read

Michael van Gerwen with the Champions League of Darts belt (Picture: Paddy Power on Twitter)1

MVG stuns Wright in final

Michael van Gerwen added the Paddy Power Champions League of Darts title to his astonishing CV as he overcame Peter Wright 11-10 in a thrilling final.

2

Monday's racing preview

He's A Keeper can provide the key to the Silver Tankard Stakes at Pontefract, according to Keith Hamer.

Sporting Life's NAP of the day3

Daily Nap: Dragon to fire

Matt Brocklebank focuses on the opening race at Pontefract as he picks out the Daily Nap from Monday's racing action.

Jurgen Klopp reacts during Liverpool's draw with Manchester United4

Klopp blasts United's system

Jurgen Klopp has expressed his frustration at Manchester United's defensive approach when they come up against Liverpool.

Marcus Rashford in action at Old Trafford5

Liverpool happier with point?

Tom McDermott analyses Manchester United's 1-1 draw with Liverpool at Old Trafford and wonders what ramifications the result will have for both sides for the rest of the season.

Racing Tips

Monday's racing preview

He's A Keeper can provide the key to the Silver Tankard Stakes at Pontefract, according to Keith Hamer.

Sporting Life's NAP of the day

Daily Nap: Dragon to fire

Matt Brocklebank focuses on the opening race at Pontefract as he picks out the Daily Nap from Monday's racing action.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette celebrate a goal for Arsenal in Valencia

Sporting Life Tipping Record

A look at how the Sporting Life recommended bets have performed in October 2019.

Next Race Off

09:35 Hyderabad
6
(6)
Air Strike
J: Neeraj Rawal
5
(3)
Yanga
J: B R Kumar

Football Tips

Sporting Life's preview of Sheffield United v Arsenal

Blades to strike on Monday night

Sheffield United welcome Arsenal to Bramall Lane on Monday night. Tom Carnduff picks out two best bets at attractive prices.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette celebrate a goal for Arsenal in Valencia

Sporting Life Tipping Record

A look at how the Sporting Life recommended bets have performed in October 2019.

Sporting Life's preview of Manchester United v Liverpool

Target these two at Old Trafford

Super Sunday sees the return of one of the Premier League's biggest rivalries as Manchester United take on Liverpool, and Tom Carnduff has a brace of bets.