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iaaf.org - Thursday, 28 July 2011 Leaner Adams enjoying life again; Cantwell close to rhythm - Stockholm, Samsung Diamond League

Published by
Chris Nickinson   Jul 28th 2011, 11:55pm
Thursday, 28 July 2011

Leaner Adams enjoying life again; Cantwell close to rhythm - Stockholm, Samsung Diamond League

Stockholm, Sweden - The DN Galan Big Shot competition was held late this afternoon at the Kungsträdgården in the city centre of the Swedish capital and as ever did not disappoint.

The main programme of competitions of this Samsung Diamond Leaguemeeting takes place tomorrow night (29) in Stockholm's 1912 Olympic Stadium.

The temporarily constructed Shot Put arena was once again packed with hundreds of spectators who, situated on seated tribunes and in fenced standing areas that are positioned so that they hug the boundaries of the throwing sector, created an atmospheric competition which resounded to the beat of pop and rock, the music tracks the personal selection of the athletes to provide them with the best possible inspiration. Not that music was really needed as the enthusiastic crowd filled the arena with loud rhythmic hand clapping before each attempt and wild applause as the shots’ hit the sector.

Cantwell - "I have had to swallow my pride”

Rhythm is what World indoor and outdoor champion Christian Cantwell, today’s winner of the men’s competition with 21.70m (21.44, 21.21, 21.10, 21.70,x,x), has been looking for ever since the season has begun, as his preparations for his World title defence in Daegu next month have begun late due to a shoulder operation in February.

“Yes I’m pleased,” said the winner. “I have only hit one peak so far this year that was for the US champs, and so for two meets I was good. At the US champs I barely fouled at 22.70 and I feel the next month when I start getting a rhythm that things will hit right. Hey that was really what today was about, getting into a rhythm and I was close.”

Reflecting on the delayed preparations to his season, Cantwell continued, “yes I think on reflection when I look back on the season I’ll feel it was actually well timed.”

“It’s hard, my wife has kept telling me ‘you are fine, you know what you are doing, you have to stay the course’ but it’s frustrating as you know I still want to throw far and its hard. It eats into your pride to see everyone else throw far but they are three months ahead (of Cantwell) in schedule. I go home and think there is a greater goal (Daegu) and more so since the surgery I have had to swallow my pride.”

“I know (a big put) is coming and today it was close and if I hadn’t rushed the last one, I kind of went easy, it would have come. It was real close. I feel good about it.”

Olympic champion Tomasz Majewski of Poland was second in his season’s best of 21.60m and looks to be a strong threat to Cantwell’s Daegu ambitions, while world season list leader Dylan Armstrong of Canada was third with 21.00. This competition was not a Diamond Race event in Stockholm. Full Results

Adams enjoying new life in Switzerland

World and Olympic champion Valerie Adams is certainly feeling good too, after the much publicised marital problems last year, the New Zealander is now back in a very positive frame of mind.

“It was a good meet, a really good show for the people and I’m happy to have won and to have won with 20.57m (19.59, 20.57, 19.97, x, x, 20.08)," said Adams.

“I have London now (next week) and then have Daegu. This year the goal is to win the World Championships, and yes the Diamond League is important to me but that’s not what I’m training for, that's not my prime focus, what I’m tapering for.”

“I focus on myself and no particular opponent but the World champs are a different ball game, and everyone is coming up, Ostapchuk, the Chinese, everybody is raising their game, so I know the competition is there. I have to be as good as I can be and throw as well as I can.”

“I’m a lot fitter now than in my championship winning years, and yes I’m leaner too.”

“Last year was a tough one for me and now I’m enjoying this one. I now live in Switzerland and  train with Werner Gunthor (three-time World Shot Put champion, 1987, 91, 93) and Jean Pierre Egger (Gunthor’s coach), and that’s been going really well.”

“I have been working really, really hard on the technique side of things, and Paris (her last competition on 9 July) was a very good meet for me, a great series (20.48, 20.78, 20.72, 20.34, x, 20.26) topped by the meet record (and her season’s best and world lead).”

“It’s a little more distracting here (Stockholm) as this is a very intimate setting so close to the public but that’s the name of the game.”

Adams’ Arch-rival Belarussian Nadezhda Ostapchuk with 20.37m (19.52, 20.24, x, 20.13, 20.37, x) and USA’s Jillian Camarena-Williams, 19.87m, came second and third respectively in this Diamond Race women's Shot Put event. Adams leads the Diamond Race standings. Full Results

Chris Turner for the Samsung Diamond League

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