Sandra Perkovic wins discus duel to cap season in Zagreb

Discus star Sandra Perkovic delighted her home crowd with a winning season’s best performance to end her year on a high at the Boris Hanzekovic Memorial, the final World Athletics Continental Tour Gold meeting of 2022. 

A number of world medallists (19) were in action at the Sports Park Mladost and joining Perkovic in securing success on an evening of heavy showers were men’s discus champion Kristjan Ceh, 110m hurdles winner Grant Holloway, 3000m steeplechase gold medallist Soufiane El Bakkali and 100m silver medallist Marvin Bracy-Williams.

Just before the celebratory fireworks started off the field of play, Perkovic provided her own flash of brilliance on it, bringing the meeting to a close with a 68.46m throw to beat USA’s Olympic champion Valarie Allman, turning the tables after her defeat at the Wanda Diamond League Final in Zurich three days earlier.

“I knew that I had this hit in me. At the end, I just said: ‘It is the last throw of the season, it is now or never’. Valarie was great and the competition was great, the weather was the only problem”, said Perkovic, who celebrated her tenth victory at Zagreb meeting.

US 110m hurdles star Holloway brought a highly successful year to a close with another win, clocking 13.19 in the wet conditions to lead a US top three ahead Freddie Crittenden in 13.31 and 2021 Robert Dunning in 13.36.

“This was a great season. It is an amazing feeling to have a triple crown. A lot of people wrote me off just because I was not quick enough at some points, but it is all about showing where and when, and winning”, Holloway said.

Jess Whittington for World Athletics