Athletics

Nel, Scott set for Rome Diamond League

Wenda Nel (Getty Images)
Wenda Nel (Getty Images)

Cape Town - South Africa's in-form athletes Wenda Nel and Dominique Scott-Efurd are looking to shift gears again on Thursday night when they compete at the fourth leg of the IAAF Diamond League series in Rome, Italy.

Nel is the second fastest woman this year in the 400m hurdles field, after clocking 54.66 at a European Permit Meeting in Prague on Monday to qualify for the IAAF World Championships in London in August.

Of the eight other women in the start list, only world champion Zuzana Hejnova of the Czech Republic, who clocked 54.50 in Eugene a couple of weeks ago, has run faster than the African champion this season.

The line-up, however, also features European champion Sara Petersen of Denmark and Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Janieve Russell of Jamaica.

Nel will face a very strong challenge for a podium place.

Scott-Efurd, meanwhile, will go in search of the World Championships B-standard qualifying mark of 15.22.00 in the 5 000m event, after narrowly missing out with a personal best of 15:24.60 in California last month.

The field is spearheaded by Ethiopian athlete Genzebe Dibaba, the 1 500m world record holder, and Olympic silver medallist Hellin Obiri of Kenya.

Schedule of the SA athletes in Rome:

20:03 - Wenda Nel (400m Hurdles)

21:40 - Dominique Scott-Efurd (5 000m)

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