Canadian sprint star Andre De Grasse. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Canada’s Brown and De Grasse finish 1-2 in 200 metres at Shanghai meet

It was Aaron Brown’s first career Diamond League victory

Canada’s Aaron Brown finished just ahead of teammate Andre De Grasse to win the men’s 200 metres at the Shanghai Diamond League on Saturday.

Brown, from Toronto, was first in 20.07 seconds while De Grasse, from Markham, Ont., was second in 20.21. South Africa’s Clarence Munyai finished third in 20.37 seconds.

It was Brown’s first career Diamond League victory.

“It was a rock-solid field today and I am pleased with the performance,” Brown said. “I felt in Doha (earlier this month) I ran a great curve then gave it all away on the straight. It was nice to win, build some momentum and gain some more respect from the guys (in the 200). I’ve just got to keep that going.”

It was the second individual 200-metre race for De Grasse since he strained his hamstring at the national championships last summer. He had a time of 20.20 seconds last April at the Grenada Invitational.

“It has taken me a while to recover fully from my injuries,” De Grasse said. “I am happy with my achievement today.”

De Grasse won silver in the men’s 200 metres at the 2016 Rio Olympics. He also earned bronze in the 100 metres and was a part of Canada’s third-place 4×100 men’s relay team.

Also Saturday, Genevieve Lalonde of Moncton, N.B., broke her own Canadian record in the 3,000 steeplechase.

Lalonde finished seventh in 9:29.82, trimming 0.17 seconds from her previous mark set in 2017. Beatrice Chepkoech of Kenya took top spot in 9:04.53.

Earlier, Olympic champion Omar McLeod of Jamaica made it four straight victories in the 110-meter hurdles.

McLeod couldn’t hold back the tears after finishing in 13.12 seconds. The 25-year-old had tweeted that he was “numb” after learning of his aunt’s death 24 hours before the race.

After a strong start, McLeod established an early lead and, despite being put under pressure in the middle section by China’s Wenjun Xie, kept his cool over the last three hurdles to win.

McLeod won at Shanghai in 2016 before going on to take gold at the Rio Games.

Qatar’s Abderrahman Samba timed 47.27 in the 400 hurdles to leave American Rai Benjamin second in 47.80. Benjamin emerged onto the straight with a lead but laboured over the penultimate barrier that allowed Samba to move up alongside him and then pull away.

American Aleia Hobbs won the women’s 100 in 11.03 despite running with a broken wrist. Blessing Okagbare finished second in 11.07 with Olympic champion Elaine Thompson third in 11.14.

Fred Kerley charged out of the blocks and held onto a huge lead in the 400 to finish in 44.81. Michael Cherry never looked to threaten Kerley’s brilliant run and clocked 45.48 while Nathan Strother made it a 1-2-3 for the United States.

In an absorbing 100 metres, Noah Lyles picked up remarkably in the last 40 metres to win with a personal best and world-leading 9.86.

Christian Coleman, who started off impressively and looked as if he would go all the way after 50 metres, got the same time but lost on a photo decision.

Yomif Kejelcha clocked the year’s fastest time in the 5,000 when he won in 13:04.16. ahead of fellow Ethiopian Selemon Barega in 13:04.71.

American Chase Ealey recorded an upset in the shot put on her debut at the Diamond League when she beat local favourite Gong Lijiao with a 19.58-metre throw in the second round.

The Associated Press

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