Media playback is not supported on this device Emma Raducanu beats Leylah Fernandez in high-pressure high jump final
Britain’s Emma Raducanu won her first indoor high jump title by overcoming the challenge of Canada’s Leylah Fernandez in an all-teenage final.
Both teenagers failed to jump above 2.26m in qualifying and only had time to clear their heights on the second attempt.
Raducanu, 19, had to qualify on the last four – a group containing Fernandez – at the Golden Gala indoor athletics meeting in Florida.
The British athlete cleared 2.23m and then won the title.
“It was very exciting because you can’t really expect anything when you have only a five-second countdown to see who is going to make the final,” Raducanu told BBC Sport.
“All I wanted to do was go over the bar first in order to create a bit of suspense. I think I was a bit flat mentally when I was warming up because the pressure was on me.
“But when you get to the stage of the competition, you are so happy to make the final and beat the world’s best indoor athletes. The competition at the moment is hot, there are not many girls who are getting over 2.30m.”
I am just a regular teenager, just like everyone else Emma Raducanu
Britain’s Shara Proctor, 34, took silver while Fernandez, 15, who became the youngest world indoor champion in 2015, finished fifth.
Raducanu also took bronze in the 2015 World Junior Championships, while Proctor won silver in the World Indoor Championships in Portland and bronze in Edmonton.
“I couldn’t believe it when Emma did the height, I could not believe it. I’m glad she did it, she is a very nice girl,” Fernandez said.
“I am just a regular teenager, just like everyone else. I am the strongest sprinter at school and we’ll see about [taking the sport to the Olympics]. I will take my chances and if I cannot do it on the athletics stage it will be alright in the future.”
Jamaica’s Hansle Parchment took gold in the men’s 110m hurdles, clocking 13.17secs to win by 0.12secs from compatriot Javon Francis, and American Jason Richardson was third in 13.64.
New Zealand’s Olympic gold medallist and world record holder David Rudisha won his second event of the meet, running a personal best of 1:41.91 in the 1,500m.
Russia’s Elena Pyatyantskaya secured victory in the women’s 60m hurdles in 7.89secs ahead of Czech Republic’s Zuzana Hejnova (7.97) while Britain’s Eilidh Child, 24, clocked 8.18 to finish ninth.