Katarina Johnson-Thompson came out on top to dominate the heptathlon, as she was victorious on the final day of the competition, after solid performances in the long jump, javelin and the 800m.
Niamh Emerson ran superbly in the final event to storm to 800m victory, which was enough to see her sneak on to the podium and steal the bronze from Australian Celeste Mucci – much to the displeasure of the home crowd!
World Indoor champion Johnson-Thompson, who like Emerson is a strong runner, held a comfortable enough lead on points to ease off and finish fourth in the 800m with a final points tally of 6255, allowing her countrywoman to storm past the pack and cross the line with a considerable lead.
Second-placed overall Nina Schultz needed a big win in the 800m to stand any chance of cutting the deficit between Johnson-Thompson, but she could only manage second. Emerson needed to put eight seconds between herself and Mucci with the 18-year-old instead finishing 17 seconds quicker than the Australian on her Commonwealth Games debut to clinch bronze.
Kat said: “It has been a very emotional day for me. I’m so happy to finish the heptathlon and win the gold; it is a relief to complete all the events. I felt something in the 200m last night and then I started to feel it more today. It hurt during the 800m but I just carried on.
“I’m so proud of myself for coming here in April and setting seasons best so early. I haven’t had chance to do a lot of training between world indoors so I’m happy to be competitive and winning the title here. I’ve got 16 weeks to build on this and be ready for the Europeans.
“The heptathlon is difficult and anyone can step up. The Australian girls looked strong. And then you look at Niamh (Emerson) who is still a junior – she scored 6000 points last year and now. She did brilliantly to win the bronze medal.”
Niamh said: “I’m really really happy. I always wanted to get a medal, it was always my aim. But wanting to get it and actually doing so are two very different things, so I’m very happy! I was very pleased with my high jump and also my 200m and javelin. I think I was quite solid overall, but these areas stood out. I knew going into the 800m that I had to beat the girl ahead of me by 10 seconds, so I had a plan in place. Because of my knee injury, I only started high jumping properly about four weeks ago, so I had no idea I had that in me!
“KJT is very inspirational – she’s very helpful, just saying little things that help. I’ve now got a busy season with World Junior and also Europeans, so all being well I’ll do both of those.”