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Track and Field

Canadian Brianne Theisen-Eaton wins heptathlon silver

Brianne Theisen-Eaton won the silver medal in the heptathlon Tuesday at the world track and field championships in Moscow, giving Canada its second podium finish of the meet.

Canada's 2nd medal at world championships

Canada's Brianne Theisen-Eaton won the silver medal in the heptathlon Tuesday at the world track and field championships in Moscow.

It was the second medal for the Canadian team at the meet. Damian Warner took bronze in the decathlon on Sunday.

The seven-event heptathlon came down to the closing 800-metre stage on Tuesday, with Ganna Melnichenko of Ukraine holding a small lead over Theisen-Eaton, who hails from Humboldt, Sask.

Racing together in the final heat, Theisen-Eaton beat Melnichenko by 0.82 seconds — not enough to overtake her for the overall lead.

Theisen-Eaton finished with a personal-best 6,530 points. Melnichenko scored 6,586, and bronze medallist Dafne Schippers of the Netherlands had 6,477.

Theisen-Eaton was trying to add a second world championship gold to her household. Last month she married Olympic decathlon champion Ashton Eaton of the United States, who won the world title on Sunday.

"I'm at peace getting silver knowing I gave it 110 per cent," Theisen-Eaton said. "Ashton and I talked about both being on the podium here.

"I watched Ashton the last couple of years winning his medals and could only imagine what that actually felt like."

Decathlon champion Ashton Eaton, left, greets his wife, Brianne Theisen-Eaton, after her runner-up finish in the heptathlon. (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

She said her husband's ongoing encouragement was also a huge boost to her.

"He said, 'Good job. Enjoy your victory lap,"' Theisen Eaton said. "He just wanted me to have my moment."

Since their marriage, they've been planning for this big adventure, postponing any thought of a honeymoon.

"The perfect time to go lay on the beach," Theisen Eaton said. "But if we did that, I'd just shut my eyes and in 10 minutes he would go, 'How much longer are we going to lay here? Let's go play volleyball or something.' He can't sit around too long."

In fourth place Monday after the first day of the competition, Theisen-Eaton improved her position on Tuesday by finishing fourth in the long jump and 10th in the javelin, setting up the 800-metre showdown.

The heptathlon at this year's worlds was considered wide open because of the absence of Olympic champion Jessica Ennis-Hill and defending champion Tatyana Chernova. Both are out injured.

Drouin advances in high jump

Also on Tuesday, Canada's Derek Drouin qualified for the final of the men's high jump. The Olympic bronze medallist cleared 2.29 metres, the same as the other leaders, to move into Thursday's fiinal.

Fellow Canadian Michael Mason (2.16m) didn't make it out of qualifying.

In the women's 1,500 metres, Canadians Nicole Sifuentes and Kate Van Buskirk failed to make it out of the semifinals.

Merritt regains 400m title 4 years later

LaShawn Merritt of the United States reclaimed the world title in the men's 400 metres, pulling away from the pack early and winning by more than half a second.

Merritt crossed in 43.74 seconds, the fastest time of the year. Merritt also won the world title in 2009.

American teammate Tony McQuay earned silver in 44.40, and Luguelin Santos of the Dominican Republic took bronze in 44.52.

Kirani James of Grenada, the defending world champion and last year's Olympic gold medallist , finished in seventh place.

Russia's Isinbayeva claims 3rd pole vault crown

Yelena Isinbayeva won the gold medal in the women's pole vault, delighting the home crowd with her third world title.

Isinbayeva cleared 4.89 metres to earn the victory ahead of Olympic champion Jenn Suhr. Yarisley Silva of Cuba, the season's top performer with a height of 4.90, took bronze.

The 31-year-old Isinbayeva plans to take a break for motherhood after the season but could come back for the 2015 world championships in Beijing or the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Farah eases into 5,000 final

Mo Farah easily qualified for Friday's final of the 5,000 in front of a sparse crowd, coasting for the last half lap in the security he would finish in the top five.

"I just wanted to do as little work as possible, freshen my legs up and get through to the final," Farah said.

Harting 3-peats in discus

Olympic champion Robert Harting of Germany won his third straight discus world championship, beating Piotr Malachowski of Poland for gold.

Harting threw 69.11 metres and held off Malachowski, who finished with 68.38. Gerd Kanter of Estonia, the 2008 Olympic champion and 2007 world champion, took bronze with 65.19.

Malachowski had ended Harting's winning streak at 35 meets early in the season but the German still came up big at the most important moment of the season.

In a traditional ritual, Harting ripped his shirt apart in celebration of the gold.

Teenager wins 800

Mohammed Aman of Ethiopia won the men's 800-metre gold medal.

The 19-year-old indoor world champion surged ahead in the home stretch to beat Nick Symmonds of the United States. Aman had his best time of the season — 1 minute, 43.31 seconds.

Symmonds finished in 1:43.55 and Ayanleh Souleiman of Djibouti took the bronze in 1:43.76.

David Rudisha, the Olympic gold medallist and defending world champion, has been out injured for most of the season. 

Aman won his last half dozen races and has beaten Rudisha twice.

Africans dominate steeplechase

Milcah Chamos Cheywa of Kenya won the gold medal in the women's 3,000-metere steeplechase.

The African record holder won in 9 minutes, 11.65 seconds, the fastest time of the year.

Lydia Chepkurui of Kenya took the silver in 9:12.55. Sofia Assefa of Ethiopia earned the bronze in 9:12.84.

Defending world champion and Olympic gold medallist Yuliya Zaripova of Russia pulled out shortly before the championships.

Russian cakewalk in 20km event

Thinking she had already won the gold medal, Elena Lashmanova came to almost a complete stop.

Inside the stadium with one lap to go in the women's 20-kilometre walk, Lashmanova briefly paused, but soon got moving again and held on to first place to lead a Russian 1-2 on Tuesday in Moscow.

"The judges didn't really explain to us that we should do one lap before the home straight and finish and that is why I stopped," said Lashmanova, the London Olympic champion and world record holder. "But I quickly understood I should keep going."

Lashmanova held off teammate Anisya Kirdyapkina with a final burst of speed to give Russia a sweep of the gold medals in the 20km events after Aleksandr Ivanov won the men's race.

After a dominating the walk through Moscow's morning heat, Lashmanova entered Luzhniki Stadium with a big lead, but then stopped after crossing the line a first time.

With Kirdyapkina closing in fast, a judge urged the 21-year-old Lashmanova to get going again. She did and managed to break the finishing tape on the second go around for gold.

Russians have won seven of the eight women's 20K walks since the event was added to the program at the 1999 worlds in Sevilla.

Russia even had eyes on a sweep Tuesday, but Vera Sokolova was disqualified with about 500 meters to go, leaving Liu Hong of China to take bronze.

"It could have been the three of us on the podium," Lashmanova said.

Because of the walks, the host nation has moved up the medal standings into second place with five overall and two gold, right behind the United States with six overall and three gold.

Yelena Isinbayeva will try to add a third gold for Russia later Tuesday in the pole vault, even though the former world and Olympic champion has not come close to her best this season.

With files from The Associated Press

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