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14 year old Deal just misses medal

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Katherine Deal, the youngest member of the Norwich Union Great Britain and Northern Ireland team at the International Paralympic Committee Athletics World Championships – just missed out on a medal on Monday 4 September.

 

The 14-year-old from St Albans in Hertfordshire came home fourth in the T13 400m final in Assen, the Netherlands. Deal was in fourth place just behind South Africa’s Ilse Hayes coming off the last bend.

She chased down the South African but couldn’t quite beat her to the line – missing a medal by just 0.21 seconds as the South African set a personal best. Deal, of Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers, ended up finishing fourth in 1:00.44. “I really enjoyed it, but I ran worse than yesterday, when I took two seconds off my personal best,” she said.  “I wanted to get a medal here, but I knew I was the youngest and the most inexperienced. They were old enough to be my mum,” she joked. “I’m really a 1500m runner. I can’t really sprint and I’m not very fast out of the blocks, because I’ve only just started using them. But because I’m a 1500m runner it means when other people are tiring, I’m still going.  “The competition is great here,” added the teenager.

 

Britain’s Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson (Cardiff ACC, New Marske Harriers) and Anne Wafula Strike (Harlow Running Club) both passed safely through to the T53 100m final. Dame Tanni won heat three in 18.12 seconds this morning – the second fastest qualifying time from the heats.

Wafula Strike was third in heat two – the fastest heat. She crossed the line in 18.72 seconds. But Britain’s Debbie Brennan (Birchfield Harriers) didn’t join the pair in tomorrow’s (Tuesday) final. Brennan is a T34 athlete, but none of her T34 events are being held in Assen, so she had to compete out of her category in the T53 event. She finished sixth in the first heat in 21.14 second.