Michelle Jenneke fell agonisingly short.
Michelle Jenneke fell agonisingly short.

Australia needs to see this Jenneke

MICHELLE Jenneke has completed her best ever finish at a major athletics meet, missing bronze in the women's 100m hurdles final by just 0.1 seconds.

It wasn't the perfect comeback story and it wasn't the best performance we've seen from her, but in a moment of huge pressure, the 24-year-old delivered a run which will have convinced the last few remaining doubters still concerned by her early gimmicks and marketing distractions.

The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games got to see Jenneke as a Commonwealth Games medal threat. Her run was a spectacle of itself - the hip-swinging jig before the starter's pistol was still there, but it wasn't the reason fans came to see her on Friday night.

She missed a medal by just 0.1 seconds after hitting the line in a time of 13.07 seconds.

Jenneke has always been a quick starter - but even she would have been shocked to see herself shoulder to shoulder with gold medallist Oluwatobiloba Amusan of Nigeria at the 50m hurdle.

Jenneke faded late to drop to fourth, finishing behind Jamaican pair Danielle Williams Yanique Thompson.

‘She got to show people he she is not just about a dance.’
‘She got to show people he she is not just about a dance.’

Her run during the heats on Thursday morning would have seen her miss bronze by just 0.02 seconds.

Her fourth-placed finish was one spot better than Glasgow in 2014 - but there was no Sally Pearson for her to try and match at Carrara Stadium on Friday night.

The maturity of her run left Aussie athletics great and Channel 7 commentator Tamsyn Lewis extremely impressed with Jenneke's professional run.

"She was so close. She got a brilliant start. She focused really well out there and she has finished fourth and Beahan has finished in fifth. What a great run by our Australian ladies," Lewis said.

"I am glad that the Australians get to see that. She is a great talented athlete. She got to show people he she is not just about a dance, she can hurdle and compete well."

 

 

Jenneke ran a season-best time of 12.99 seconds to qualify for the final. It was impressive given it's been roughly a year since the 24-year-old has broken the 13-second barrier.

"That is the best we have seen her run for a fair while," Channel 7's Bruce McAvaney said.

It was another chapter in the 24-year-old's incredible rollercoaster comeback after her highly-publicised struggles at the Rio Olympics in 2016 - after Coca Cola had made her into one of their global ambassadors alongside Usain Bolt.

She never made it out of the heats in Brazil.

Australian track and field head coach Craig Hilliard didn't mince words at the time over the hurdler's poor showing in Rio, saying Jenneke arrived out of shape.

She also had her Athletics Australia funding cut during the same season.

She says he has never received a cent since.

Her performance on the Gold Coast suggests there is hope for Jenneke's relationship with Australian officials.

Earlier on Friday night in the athletics, Aussie Ben Harradine finished sixth in his farewell competition finishing behind Matty Denny (4th) and Mitchell Cooper (5th).

Aussie pole-vaulter Nina Kennedy took bronze with a jump of 4.60m. Canada's Alysha Newman took gold with a vault of 7.75m - setting a new Commonwealth Games record.



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