Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Archive
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Sunday, August 22, 1999 Published at 21:51 GMT 22:51 UK


Lewis takes heptathlon silver

Barber of Seville (centre): Lewis (left) knows she is beaten

Eunice Barber of France has won the heptathlon, consigning British hope Denise Lewis to silver at the World Championships in Seville.

Seville 99
The electrifying emergence of Barber ruined one of Britain's best hopes for a gold at the worlds in four years.

Olympic gold medallist Ghada Shouaa of Syria took bronze.


The BBC's Andy Swiss reports: "It was the normally trusty javelin that ended her title aspirations"
"I was beaten by a really exceptional performer," said Lewis.

"I feel disappointment...it's been a rollercoaster two days. I'm exhausted mentally."

The 26-year-old went into the final event, the 800m, trailing Barber by 120 points.

'This is a dream'

Baring a disaster, the French athlete only had to complete the final event within 10 seconds of Lewis to be assured of winning the gold.

She duly finished comfortably ahead of the Briton with the sixth best heptathlon points total of all time and a new French record.


[ image: Eunice Barber: French record]
Eunice Barber: French record
"This is a dream for me," she said afterwards. The Sierra Leone-born athlete only became a naturalised French citizen on 2 February this year.

Lewis was left with only a 73-point gap between herself and leader Barber coming into the penultimate event, the javelin.

But she failed to throw near the mid-50m mark, which would have given her a comfortable lead going into the final event.

By contrast, Barber landed a throw measuring out at 49.88m - near her personal best.

Jump row

Lewis could only manage 47.44m, more than 6m short of her own best.

It came as a disappointment for the European and Commonwealth champion, who had been expected to pick up more points in one of her strongest events.


[ image: Denise Lewis: Controversial long-jump decision]
Denise Lewis: Controversial long-jump decision
Earlier, Lewis had her hopes of even having a chance to win a gold medal all but wiped out, when officials decided to foul what appeared to be a legitimate leap in the long jump.

But after a long-running dispute with officials, a protest from the British camp eventually overturned the decision and gave Lewis a fighting chance coming into the last two disciplines.

The controversy centred around Lewis' final jump, measured at 6.64m.

French team managers claimed the Briton had fouled the jump by touching the plasticine at the end of the board - but the IAAF decided to overturn their protest.



Advanced options | Search tips




Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©


World Athletics Contents


Relevant Stories

22 Aug 99 | World Athletics
Seville winners: Day two

22 Aug 99 | World Athletics
Lewis back on course for gold

21 Aug 99 | World Athletics
Lewis fights back in heptathlon





Internet Links


International Amateur Athletics Federation


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




In this section

Athletics saves face

Brits sprint to relay silver

Injury wrecks Backley medal bid

Wembley to host athletics showpiece

Red leader powers Korean runner to gold

Seville winners: Final day

Red-faced relay runners crash out

Devers wins, but Engqvist earns plaudits

Anton is home hero

Greene flies to historic double

Miller makes it gold

Johnson smashes 400m record

Radcliffe wins silver in 10,000 metres

Heat is on in Seville

Michael Johnson: Life in the fast lane

Jackson hurdles to gold

Magnificent Macey snatches silver

Devastated Edwards gets bronze

A sprint too far for Jones

Colin Jackson: Britain's golden boy

Dean Macey: The great unknown

El Guerrouj stuns Seville

Hansen flops in triple jump

Two disqualified over drugs

May quits after medals row

Injury wrecks Smith's medal dream

Jones fails in four-gold attempt

Lewis takes heptathlon silver