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Three Team USA Olympians Finish Runner-Up At Diamond League Meet In London

By Blythe Lawrence | July 21, 2019, 6:53 p.m. (ET)

Brittney Reese celebrates after winning gold in the women's long jump final at the 16th IAAF World Athletics Championships London 2017 on August 11, 2017 in London, United Kingdom.


Runner-up performances from Olympic champions Christian Taylor and Brittney Reese and Olympic medalist Nia Ali capped off the American effort at this weekend’s Diamond League meet in London.

Taylor, the Olympic gold medalist in triple jump at the past two Olympic Games, landed second in Saturday’s men’s final, his best attempt measuring 17.19 meters. It was not quite enough to overtake two-time world silver medalist Pedro Pablo Pichardo of Portugal, whose season-best 17.53 meters won the day. 2016 Olympian Hugues Zango of Burkina Faso was a distant third, having recorded 16.88.

“I am happy to come out healthy — it was difficult,” said Taylor, who also has world titles in triple jump from 2011 and 2015. “It is always good to have Pichardo pushing me because this is what we need. It's good for the spectators as well because of the rivalry. We still have two months before the world championships so there is no rush and I am just happy to be here.”

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Rio Olympic silver medalist Nia Ali also finished second in the women’s 100-meter hurdles, clocking in at 12.57 seconds, a new season best time, while U.S. teammate Queen Claye was third in 12.64. Jamaica’s Danielle Williams, the 2015 world champion in the event, ran it best, crossing the line in 12.32 seconds to set a new world-leading time this season.

“It wasn't the greatest performance in terms of where I want to be but this time is awesome for me,” Ali said. “It is really huge for me to be progressing so quickly, so I am pleased. It is always important for me to be competing against the best in the world. I love that it was a competitive field and everyone is running very fast. It's great motivation.”

Reese, the long jump gold medalist in London in 2012, scored a runner-up finish of her own in London Stadium Sunday for a jump measuring 6.82 meters. Malaika Mihambo of Germany took first with a meet-record 7.02 meters, while Ukraine’s Maryna Bekh-Romanchuk was third, her best leap coming in at 6.78 meters.

Diamond League action moves on from London, though it won’t be going too far — the next meeting is set for Aug. 18 in Birmingham, England.

Blythe Lawrence is a journalist based in Seattle. She has covered two Olympic Games and is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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Nia Ali