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Shot put one-two: Walsh wins gold, Gill takes silver

Tom Walsh mentioned earlier than the competitors began that in the future he was untouchable.

As we speak was an excellent day. And never only for Walsh.

The defending champion has claimed his second gold medal in a row on the Commonwealth Video games, basically sealing victory together with his first throw earlier than placing an exclamation mark on his final.

Walsh opened the competitors at Alexander Stadium with a formidable 21.98m effort, surpassing the private greatest distances of all others within the discipline, and completed it off with a 22.26m flourish.

The 30-year-old was joined on the rostrum by compatriot Jacko Gill, who gained his first main championship medal by taking silver with a private better of 21.90m.

The Kiwi pair produced 12 of the competitors’s greatest 13 throws, one of the best of people who noticed Walsh win seventeenth gold by a Kiwi in Birmingham, equaling the nation’s 1990 document in Auckland.

For Walsh, it was the proper capstone for a Video games that started when he led the New Zealand group on the identical venue final week, flagging alongside Joelle King.

It additionally earned a gold comfort prize after surprisingly failing to make the rostrum on the world championships final month, after which Walsh mentioned he had “a rocket up his ass” to show his prowess once more.

Excited sufficient, he now has two Commonwealth Video games golds along with the silver he gained in Glasgow and the Olympic bronze medals he took in Rio and Tokyo.

For Gill, in the meantime, silver was a long-awaited reward for the promise he confirmed in his profession, having earned fame earlier than his older compatriot by taking back-to-back titles on the World Junior Championships.

The 27-year-old has by no means reached the identical heights on the senior degree. However final month he completed seventh in Oregon for the second consecutive world championships – ending ninth in Tokyo – and earlier this yr set his private better of 21.58m.

Not like the dramas that plagued Walsh’s efficiency in Tokyo, the place he narrowly escaped disqualification after initially going thrice with out throws in qualifying, this was a a lot simpler night time for the favorite.

Moving into the circle in Birmingham, Walsh instantly despatched his first try to the 22-yard line, falling a couple of inches under that mark however climbing half a step to the highest of the rostrum.

The job was virtually achieved, Walsh sat down and draped his arm over the again of a chair. He appeared extraordinarily relaxed as he watched if he wished Kiwi firm on stage.

Gill’s first try made that prospect doubtless. At 20.48 meters he was second after the primary of six laps and there was a number of room for enchancment.

Walsh’s subsequent was not as spectacular, however his distance of 21.46m was second greatest within the ultimate, with Gill then going additional clear in silver with 20.88m.

Midway by way of the sport, he was 55cm forward of Nigerian Chukwuebuka Enekwechi, who claimed silver on the Gold Coast. And after Gill’s fourth try at 21.20m, that benefit was prolonged to 87cm.

Walsh’s fourth recalled his teammate who remained in command, with 21.84m, earlier than Gill improved his grip on silver with a fifth throw of 21.29m – confirming that award with a private greatest try, taking 1 33 m forward of England’s Scott Lincoln. in bronze.

All that was left was for Walsh to rejoice in a means that re-emphasized his dominance within the Commonwealth, even surpassing himself earlier than driving off in raptures to finish one other golden night time.

By Kris Shannon in Birmingham

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