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Idowu leaps to victory and tops rankings

PUBLISHED: 11:07 12 June 2008 | UPDATED: 13:21 05 October 2010

PHILLIPS Idowu leapt to the top of the world triple jump rankings in Greece last weekend as he made the perfect start to the outdoor season and raised his hopes of lifting Olympic gold this summer. Idowu cleared 17.55m at the Venizelia meeting in Chania o

PHILLIPS Idowu leapt to the top of the world triple jump rankings in Greece last weekend as he made the perfect start to the outdoor season and raised his hopes of lifting Olympic gold this summer.

Idowu cleared 17.55m at the Venizelia meeting in Chania on Saturday to underline his status as frontrunner for the gold medal in Beijing.

The 29-year-old, taking part in his first competition of the outdoor season, produced the longest jump in the world this year to top the world rankings by five centimetres from Cuba's David Girat.

It was the third best jump of his career and an outstanding marker as Idowu, a former pupil of Raine's Foundation School in Bethnal Green, won by 28cm from leading rival Randy Lewis, from Grenada, with Dimitris Tsiamis, of Greece, third with 16.88m.

Idowu, who broke Jonathan Edwards's long standing British indoor record to take the world title in Valencia this year, has only bettered that distance outdoors when he finished second to Edwards with 17.68m at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.

Idowu finished sixth at the Sydney Olympics but failed to make the cut at the Olympic final in Athens in 2004.

The triple jump star is determined to make up for that disappointment in China this year and he outlined his Olympic ambitions following his indoor triumph in Valencia in March.

His hopes of claiming the Olympic title have been raised by the comprehensive victory against a world class field, which also included Russian Olympic bronze medallist Danila Burkenya.


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