Barbora Spotakova of Czech wins gold in women´s javelin throw at Beijing Games
Source: Xinhua | 08-21-2008 22:27Special Report: 2008 Beijing Olympic Games
BEIJING, Aug. 21 (Xinhua) -- Barbora Spotakova of Czech won the gold medal in women's javelin throw with 71.42 meters at the Beijing Olympics here on Thursday, the best performance this year.
Maria Abakumova of Russia took the silver with 70.78 meters, and Christina Obergfoll of Germany claimed the bronze with 66.13 meters.
The 27-year-old was not assured of the crown until her last trial. "I usually win with my first throw. I've never won with my last attempt. This is the first time," said the champion.
Before that, she was trailing Abakumova who took a lead in the first five efforts. The 22-year-old Russian launched the spear 70.78 meters in her fourth attempt, which secured her second place.
Before them, only two women in history had thrown over the 70-meter mark. Cuba's Osleidys Menendez set the world record of 71.70 meters on Aug. 14, 2005.
The defending Olympic champion and double world champion finished sixth with 63.35 meters in her first trial, the only legal effort in her six chances.
Obergfoll, runner-up at the 2007 World Championships, claimed the bronze with only 66.13 meters, which was far away behind her personal best of 70.20 meters. She was obviously not in her top form as she gave four false throws in the total six trials.
"I don't know how I did it. I can tell you honestly - I don't know how I did it," said the gold medalist after the match. "It was very hard and I had many doubts since I didn't throw so well in the beginning."
"Last year I won the world championships, but to be an Olympic gold medalist is something much bigger. This is the maximum I can gain in my career," said the 2007 World Championship gold medalist.
The silver medalist said, "After the fourth throw, I realized I could be the best. Until then, there were only Spotakova and I competing against each other. I could only say she performed so well. I just gave it my all. I'm satisfied with my result."
"There were only five minutes between each throw and I felt it was not enough for me to rest. So, I performed just normally. Before each throw, I would take a deep breath and do according to plan." she said.
"There were so many thoughts in my head saying 'Is this my day, can I be the gold medalist?' They kept popping up until the very last moment," she said.