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Sally Pearson disqualified at Stockholm meet

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Sally Pearson was disqualified in her first run since the Commonwealth Games.

Sally Pearson was disqualified in her first run since the Commonwealth Games. Photo: AFP

STOCKHOLM: Australian Olympic gold medal winner Sally Pearson has been disqualified at the start of a hurdles race in Stockholm after the starter twice stood up the field.

Thursday's controversial 100m race was at the IAAF Diamond League meet where Dani Samuels from NSW came second in the women's discus after throwing 65.70m.

In the hurdles race Pearson lined up against a strong field for her first race since successfully defending her Commonwealth Games title in Glasgow.

But she never got to race as she was disqualified after the starter stood up the field on two successive occasions.

The starter was subsequently widely criticised for holding athletes too long in the set-position, after an unusually high number of races during the night had to be restarted.

Queen Harrison of the US went on to win the hurdles in 12.66 seconds but the race had further drama as Cindy Billaud of France fell and failed to finish and US runner Dawn Harper-Nelson hit a hurdle heavily late in the race and also almost tumbled.

In the discus, Samuels was competing in her first competition since taking gold at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.

She opened the competition with a throw of 63.15m and improved to 63.46m in round two to be in second place early behind Shanice Craft of Germany, who reached 63.56m with her first attempt.

Samuels improved again in round three to be just 6cm behind the German after a hurl of 63.50m. World number one Sandra Perkovic of Croatia subsequently unleashed a throw of 66.27m in the third round to take the competition lead, while American Gia Lewis-Smallwood also reached 65.21m to see Samuels drop to fourth at the midway point of the competition.

In round four however Samuels leapfrogged both Craft and Lewis-Smallwood back into second when she recorded a throw of 65.70m. Perkovic maintained her lead with an improved throw of 66.74m of her own.

Samuels fouled her fifth attempt as she tried to catch Perkovic and with her final throw threw 64.70m to finish in second place behind the Croatian.

AAP

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