Baptiste wins 200m as Lalang hands Kenya more gold | india | Hindustan Times
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Baptiste wins 200m as Lalang hands Kenya more gold

india Updated: Oct 10, 2010 20:51 IST

AFP
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England's Leon Baptiste streaked to the men's 200m title at the Commonwealth Games on Sunday as Kenya's Boaz Lalang made the most of David Rudisha's no-show to win the 800m.

Wales also got itself on the top step of the podium for the first time in Delhi with European champion Dai Greene winning the 400m hurdles gold ahead of South African defending champion Louis Van Zyl.

His Welsh training partner Rhys Williams was third.

"I am on such a high at this moment. This winter is going to be so easy with all these medals keeping me warm," said Greene."There couldn't be any better ending."

Nigeria's Muizat Odumosu took the women's crown, running the race of her life to beat Scotland's Eilidh Child and Jamaica's Nickiesha Boden.

But the women's 200m final failed to go ahead due to a protest from the semi-finals held earlier in the evening, with the race now being run Monday.

Eight gold medals were decided in front of a packed Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, as the Games' ticketing woes started being addressed.

Canada's Nicole Forrester leapt 1.91 metres to win the women's high jump ahead of Sheree Francis of Jamaica, with Levern Spencer winning bronze -- only the second ever medal for the tiny island of St Lucia.

In the men's discus, Australia's Benn Harradine threw 65.45 metres to take the title, but the big cheers were reserved for local hope Vikas Gowda who grabbed silver ahead of England's Carl Myerscough in bronze.

Canada's Alice Falaiye won the women's long jump final.

Baptiste came of age in the 200m, powering over the line in 20.45 seconds ahead of Jamaica's Lansford Spence and Wales' Christian Malcolm.

But there was disappointment for English veteran Marlon Devonish, who failed to add to the three Commonwealth medals already in his collection when he finished fifth.

Despite 800m world record holder Rudisha not being here, Kenya proved it has plenty of depth in its squad with World Indoor Championships silver medallist Lalang striding to the title.

He led a Kenyan clean sweep with Richard Kipagat second and Abraham Kiplangat third, but their times were well off Steve Cram's Commonwealth record and some five seconds behind Rudisha's 1:41.01 world best.

"It was not so difficult. We were likely to win the medals and I want to congratulate the guys who ran the race," said Lalang.

"We had planned it to finish one-two-three and it worked great. We didn't say before who had to win, we just let it be decided in the race who was the best."

Meanwhile, Australia's Olympic silver medallist Sally Pearson, who was sensationally stripped of her 100m sprint gold for a false start, put the disappointment behind her to be the fastest into the 100m hurdles final.

Pearson clocked 13.02 seconds ahead of Canada's Angela Whyte to be clear favourite in the absence of world number one Priscilla Lopes-Schliep of Canada.

"I have to just move on as best as I can and focus on my real event. That's what I'm here for," she said of the 100m drama.

Another high-profile athlete to miss the Games is South Africa's world 800m champion Caster Semenya.

She pulled out with a back injury just months after the International Association of Athletics Federations ended a controversial probe into her gender that saw her sidelined for almost 11 months.

With Semenya out, Kenya's Nancy Langat, who has already won the 1,500m here, is favourite for the title and she comfortably eased into Monday's final.