Zurich will host the Diamond League Final in 2020 and 2021 as the series switches to a single-day format.

Since being established in 2010, the Diamond League has staged dual finals in Zurich and Brussels.

However, Weltklasse Zurich will now host the lone showpiece for two straight years while the King Baudouin Stadium undergoes renovation.

From 2022 to 2024 the final is set to rotate annually, with all meetings invited to apply to serve as hosts.

The Diamond League board will select the 12 regular-season meetings for the 2020 season next month.

"Zurich has been the home of many of the most extraordinary moments in athletics over more than 90 years, including 25 world records, and we are delighted that it will host the pinnacle one-day meeting of 2020," IAAF president Sebastian Coe said in a statement.

"The Diamond League is vital to our future growth as it provides an annual showcase of the very best in athletics, which is why we must ensure that every contest broadcast to the world is of the highest standard.

"We expect the new Diamond League format to be even more thrilling for our global audience as it builds excitement throughout the outdoor season and reaches a crescendo in Zurich.”   

A total of 24 disciplines will run across the 12 meetings – 12 male and 12 female – with each meet staging six male and six female events before all are present at the Zurich final.

The winners at the Diamond League Final will earn automatic qualification to the IAAF World Championships.

Jamaica’s Stephenie-Ann McPherson ran a blinding final 50 to win the 400 metres inside the Charlety Stadium at the Paris Diamond League on Saturday.

McPherson clocked 51.11 seconds to claim the Diamond League one-lap event ahead of the United States’s Kendall Ellis, who was timed in 51.21.

Another US athlete, Shakima Wimbley, was third in 51.50.

McPherson, coming off the final bend was not in the frame for a medal but found an extra gear over the last 70 metres, advancing from fourth to storm past Ellis, who was also moving past Wimbley.

The strong finish from Ellis was impressive but McPherson showed real heart, making sure her lane seven assignment counted for nothing.

The United States’ Phyllis Francis was a disappointing fourth in 51.56, while the Netherland’s Lisanne de Witte was fifth in 51.83.

Botswana’s Christine Botlogetswe, 52.02, France’s Deborah Sananes, 52.04, and her countrywoman Amandine Brossier, 53.29, rounded out the field.

Elaine Thompson, despite putting together consistent wins over 100 metres this season, believes she is still not at 100 per cent just yet.

Thompson made it five wins from as many starts over the shortest sprint on Saturday when she blew away the challenge of the Ivory Coast’s Marie-Josee Ta Lou to stop the clock at 10.98 seconds.

While the time wasn’t as quick as the heady 10.73 she clocked earlier this season, the performance was dominant and the 2016 Olympic champion may be looking like a favourite for a 2019 World Championship title.

Thompson is staying calm though and going through the process to ensure she is at peak when she gets to Doha.

"It's still five weeks to Doha so it's all preparation at this stage," the 27-year-old Thompson said.

"I'm not 100 percent yet because it's all about the world championships. It's very important to put races like this in because it was a strong field."

Despite saving something for the finish, Jamaica’s Natoya Goule was pipped by a well-timed late sprint from the United States’ Hanna Green during their 800-metre Diamond League meeting in Paris on Saturday. 

Jamaican sprinter Elaine Thompson continues to look unbeatable over 100 metres lately, easing to her latest victory at the Paris Diamond League on Saturday. 

Jamaican triple jumper, Shanieka Ricketts, is still in search of the elusive 15-metre mark after a fourth-place finish at the Paris Diamond League on Saturday.

The triple jump was won by Brazil’s Yulimar Rojas, who got out to 15.05 metres and was the only athlete over the mark.

The next three jumpers were all bunched up, with Cuba’s Liadagmis Povea ending second with a hop, skip and a jump of 14.75 metres.

Third was the United States’ Keturah Orji with 14.72, a personal best.

That personal best came with Orji’s final jump, giving her third place ahead of Ricketts by just a centimeter.

Ricketts’ coach and husband Kerrylee Ricketts said his charge was now working on her landing because 15 metres was not far away were she to get that right.

Another Jamaican, Kimberly Williams, finished further down the field in sixth with a leap of 14.45 metres.   

Jamaica’s delegation to the 2019 Para Pan American Games was greeted with a welcome ceremony when they arrived at the athletes’ village in Lima, Peru on Thursday afternoon.

Dressed in black and gold with black caps the members of the delegation led by Chef de Mission, Leonie Phinn sang the national anthem and Bob Marley's "One Love" and announced their arrival with "What a gwaan, wi strong".

The receptive crowd waved miniature flags in return.

Chef de Mission Phinn presented former Peruvian athlete, Giorgio Mautino, the Mayor of the Village, with a bag in the colours of the national flag and which contained local spices, Blue Mountain coffee in addition to Jamaican clothing and headgear.

Phinn thanked Mautino for the tremendous hospitality extended to the Jamaican delegation and assured him that she was confident that the Games would be successful.

“Welcome ceremonies are always somewhat emotional for they remind you that the journey for the country now begins and the hoisting of the flag and the National Anthem embody reverence and pride, the feeling of which cannot be underscored,” said JPA President Christopher Samuda.

The Para Pan American village accommodates more than 4,000 para-athletes and officials from the Americas and Caribbean.

Jamaica sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce has targeted adding another feat to an already impressive resume and that is becoming a member of the sub-22 seconds club.

Despite being better known over her exploits over the half the distance, where she has claimed numerous world and Olympic titles, Fraser-Pryce has also proven to be more than competitive over the distance. 

An impressive performance over the half-lap event was part of a memorable triple gold medal haul at the Moscow World Championships.  With a personal best of 22.09 set in London, in 2012, Fraser-Pryce is yet to crack the 22-second mark.  The feat has been achieved by five Jamaican women to date Merlene Ottey, Elaine Thompson, Grace Jackson, Veronica Campbell-Brown and Juliet Cuthbert.

Fraser-Pryce recently completed in the event at Birmingham Diamond League where she finished in third spot behind Shaunae Miller-Uibo and Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith.

“One of my dreams, one of my goals is to get below 22 seconds.  It would be an honour to get below 22 seconds,” Fraser-Pryce told Nuffin Long Athletics.

“I’m not the best 200m runner but I love the opportunities I get to run the 200m.  I’m one of those persons that doesn’t back from anything unless you give me a 400m then don’t want to run it.”

After only two weeks with Rana Reider’s Tumbleweed Track Club, 2017 World Champion, Omar McLeod is confident he is back on track to defend his world title at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar.

Jamaica world and Olympic champion Omar McLeod believes things are getting back to normal, following yet another chance in training regime.

The 25-year-old had trained with Eldrick Floreal up until late 2018 but then moved to Gary Evans at Empire Athletics in Florida.  Tony Ross at World Fastest Humans was his hurdles coach.  The athlete has since struggled, however.  Before claiming the top spot in Birmingham on Sunday, McLeod won only two hurdles races and has a season-best time of 13.12s set at the Diamond League meeting in Shanghai, China.

The athlete is, however, rumored to have joined the Tumbleweed camp of elite coach Rana Reider in Jacksonville, Florida, earlier this month and seems to be in a better frame of mind.  On Sunday, at the Birmingham Diamond League meet, McLeod clocked 13.21, well clear of the United States’ Freddie Crittenden (13.31) and Xie Wenjun (13.43).  Following the win, the athlete admitted, the target was getting in shape for the World Championships.

“It was pretty easy and felt good. It was nice to make up for what happened in London. I'm in a new environment with a new coach and I feel like I'm ready to go again,” McLeod said.


“For Doha, I need to go there in the best possible shape and not been half-bothered about it. Anything can happen and I need to go there as defending champion and be ready to compete,” he added.
“I have the Diamond League finals prior to Doha so I need to be ready for that.”

Jamaica 100m hurdler Danielle Williams continued her run of red-hot form after destroying the field to claim the women’s 100m title at the Birmingham Diamond League meet on Sunday.

In fact, the impressive Williams equaled the meeting record after stopping the clock at 12.46, well clear of American world record holder Kendra Harrison who was second in 12.66.  Nigeria’s Tobi Amusan was third in 12.71.  Another Jamaican in the race, Janeek Brown, was 5th with a time of 12.79.

Despite being satisfied with the win, Williams, who admitted that she has been focused on her race execution, was not entirely pleased with how things unfolded.

“To be honest I didn't execute that properly. I banged my knee on one of the hurdles but I came away with the win so I'm happy. It wasn't that important to win, this is another race on the way to the Diamond League finals and whether I won or lost, execution was my only focus,” Williams said following the race.

“Every time I've been racing I've been consistent with my times and that is the main thing for me.”

The result leaves Williams as the top Diamond Race qualifier after three wins for 31 points.  Harrison is next with two wins and 23 points.

Bahamian quarter-mile star Shaunae Miller-Uibo continued an impressive spell of sprinting dominance after claiming a 9th straight win at the Birmingham Diamond League meeting on Sunday.

The Bahamian Olympic champion, however, had to work late on after trailing both Jamaican Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith with 15 metres to go.  Miller-Uibo, however, held her form superbly to go by both in the closing stages, in the end winning by around a metre.  The result meant the Bahamian, who crossed the line in 22.24, has not lost a race since the 2017 Muller Grand Prix.  Asher-Smith was second in 22.36, with Fraser-Pryce third in 22.50.

Despite winning the race, however, Miller-Uibo was quick to admit that things did not quite go according to plan.

“The race didn't go to plan,” said Miller-Uibo, who set a meeting record of 22.15 when winning here last year, on that occasion also defeating Asher-Smith. “My start was just horrible and I had to rely on that 400m strength to get through."

“I’m feeling good. Before the race, we had an idea of how we wanted the race to go and it didn't go as planned so I’m happy for the win and ready to move on to the next.”

 

Despite being given clearance to compete for a spot at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics, Jamaican hurdler Danielle Williams remains in the hunt for a Diamond League trophy.

A Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) decision had deemed Williams ineligible to compete for a spot at this year’s World Championships after a false start at the country’s national trials, however, there was still a window for the athlete to make the team to Doha had she earned an automatic spot via winning the Diamond League.

Williams then broke the national record and is unbeaten over the 100-metre hurdles since that time. Her 12.32-second clocking meant she lead the world, putting the JAAA in some amount of discomfort.

However, earlier this week, another JAAA release said the athlete would be contemplated since her disqualification in the event, could not be counted since the race was deemed null and void after subsequent attempts at re-running it.

That being said, Williams’ time would suggest she is a shoe-in for a place on the team the JAAA said would be picked based on IAAF-ranking at the time of selection.

Williams leads the world rankings with 1385 points while Megan Tapper with 1263, Janeek Brown with 1257, and Yanique Thompson with 1202 are the next highest-ranked Jamaicans.

Should Williams earn an automatic place, Thompson, who for the moment is out of a place at the World Championships could be headed to Doha as well.

Still, Williams coach, Lennox Graham has come out to say, the 2015 World Champion would still be taking aim at the Diamond League Trophy.

“The focus of our season doesn’t change. Once the issue happened, we had made a conscious decision to focus on the things that we can control  and what we were in control of at the time was contractually agreed to already, running in the Diamond League and getting all the points you can and getting into the final and try to win. This decision extends her season so that’s the effect that this will have on it,” Graham had said in an interview with Radio Jamaica.

The Diamond League moves to Birmingham tomorrow where Williams is again down to compete.

Two-time Olympic gold medallist Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce will release her new book, ‘I Am A Promise’, in September.

The 32-yer-old Fraser-Pryce made the announcement on Saturday on social media.

‘I Am A Promise’, is a children’s picture book about the indomitable spirit of the six-time Olympic medal winner.

The book takes readers on Fraser-Pryce's journey from her childhood in the tough inner-city community of Waterhouse in Kingston, Jamaica, through to her development as a young athlete and finally to her first Olympic gold medal in the 100 metres in Beijing, China in 2008.

The story charts how Fraser-Pryce's commitment to hard work and encouragement from loved ones helped her to achieve every sprinter’s dreams and against great odds. The book encourages young readers to believe in themselves and to maximse their own promise to the world.

Fraser-Pryce, in a post on Facebook, said, “I am super excited to share my most recent project! My upcoming children’s book, I Am A Promise,  which will be launched in September in select Sangster’s Bookstores locations.

“Seeing my personal journey depicted in print and colour is such a blessing for me, and I am so humbled to be able to share it with you all.

“The genesis of this is founded on what I believe is fundamentally important; how we raise our children, the importance of consistent love and nurturing their God-given talents always.

“This book is extra special for me also as I will be able to read it to Zyon (her son) and teach him these valuable lessons as he grows up."

In 2016, Fraser-Pryce published her tell-all autobiography, ‘Pryceless Journey’, which detailed her many struggles and obstacles along the path to becoming an Olympic champion.

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