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Emotional Doran wins Australian 100m title

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John Salvado / AAP News

 

It was another action-packed night at the Athletics Australia Track & Field National Championships.

Flying Queenslander Jake Doran has followed in the footsteps of Rohan Browning by scorching to victory in the men’s 100m at the Australian track and field championships.

Now the 21-year-old may get the chance to replicate the Tokyo Olympics star by showcasing his talents on the global stage.

Doran took full advantage of an illegal 3.7m tailwind on Friday night at Sydney Olympic Park to cross the line in 10.05 seconds ahead of big New Zealander Eddie Osei-Nketia (10.17).

“What an amazing night,” he said.

“This is championship running, the time is whatever, it’s about getting over the line first and the bling at the end of the race.

“The time is beautiful, but to become the national champion – that’s what it’s all about.”

Doran succeeded Browning as national champion after the man who went within a whisker of breaking the magical 10-second barrier at the Tokyo Olympics was handed an exemption to skip the nationals this year due to hamstring soreness.

Now fully fit after overcoming serious hamstring and feet injuries, Doran – who boasts an official personal best of 10.15 – is confident he can match Friday night’s time in legal conditions.

If so, he would better the brutally tough qualifying mark for the world championships in Eugene, Oregon and the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

“Qualification has got really hard in the last couple of years,” he said.

“But Rohan showed us that an Australian can do it.”

Tokyo Olympics finalist Ollie Hoare won his first national title the hard way, going to the front with two laps to go and hanging on to win the men’s 1500m in three minutes 40.79 seconds.

He joined Gold Coast 2018 discus silver medallist Matt Denny and Gold Coast 2018 pole vault bronze medallist Nina Kennedy in guaranteeing their spots in the squad for the world championships in July.

It will be a homecoming of sorts for Hoare, who was a star college runner for the University of Oregon.

“I had such a great year last year and wit h that comes a certain kind of standard,” said Hoare.

“For me, coming back from the States to compete at the national championships was tough, but I was really mellow and cool and my experience competing at the world level was crucial.”

Victorian Abbey Caldwell caused a boilover in the women’s 1500m final by taking down one of her idols, Tokyo Olympics finalist Linden Hall.

Caldwell crossed the line first in 4:10.75 ahead of Georgia Griffith and Hall.

“To have the national title is such an honour – I can’t ask for much more than that,” said Caldwell.

“Especially beating Linden, she’s someone I’ve looked up to for such a long time.”

Rising sprint star Ella Connolly (11.29) won her maiden national title as the first Australian over the line in a women’s 100m final won by New Zealander Zoe Hobbs (11.17).

Kennedy won the women’s pole vault with 4.35m and Denny (62.79m) claimed a fourth straight national title in the men’s discus.

As Kennedy and Denny had both previously bettered the qualifying marks, those victories guaranteed them berths on the world championships team.

Alex Beck and Ellie Beer won the national 400m titles.

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