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Belgian heptathlete Nafi Thiam wins gold at world athletics championship

09:59 19/07/2022

Belgium’s Nafissatou Thiam confirmed her position as queen of the heptathlon when she pulled off a personal best in the 800m to reclaim her world championship title.

The double Olympic champion, reigning European champion and now double world champion had to beat Dutch rival Anouk Vetter, who went into the final event 19 points ahead of the Belgian.

Vetter, who won silver behind Thiam in the multi-discipline event in Tokyo last year, produced her own personal best, but it was two seconds slower than the Belgian’s.

"I didn't want to have any regrets before the 800m. I couldn't know what she was doing behind me so I went all out. I knew I could do a good time, I worked a lot for this event," Thiam told RTBF after the fastest 800m of her life at the US-staged competition.

"It was super stressful. I was starting to feel tired this morning. Usually it's the others who try to catch me. It was a position that I had never known. But like in every championship, I try to give everything. I'm super proud because it's a big total that I managed,” added Thiam.

The 27-year-old is now setting her sights on the European championships in three weeks’ time. “I'm mainly going to try to recover and see if my body can repeat a second heptathlon without risk. My season is already successful, the rest will be a bonus."

Photo: © Belga/Thomas Windestam

Written by Sarah Crew