Jamaican jumpers pride in silver, bronze haul
BUDAPEST, Hungary — It took a clutch last-series jump from Olympic champion Miltiadis Tentoglou to deny Jamaica’s Wayne Pinnock his first global gold medal, but that did not dampen the celebration of what was another historic moment in Jamaica’s track and field history.
Three Jamaicans lined up in the final as Pinnock, who led the contest from the second round, won Jamaica’s first silver medal in the long jump since James Beckford in 2003 in France; 2019 champion Tajay Gayle continued his resurgence from injury with a bronze medal; while Carey McLeod was fourth.
Pinnock, who had led the qualifiers with a lifetime best 8.594 effort on Wednesday, jumped 8.50m (-0.1m/s), Gayle equalled his season’s best 8.27m (-0.3m/s), and Carey also jumped 8.27m (0.8m/s).
Pinnock, who opened with 8.40m, improved to 8.50m in the second round — the same as Tentogliu’s opening jump — but led on the tiebreaker, having the better second jump.
The Greek, however, pulled out a season-best 8.52m in the final round as Pinnock came up short with 8.38m.
Pinnock, ninth last year in Eugene, Oregon, said he was confident he could compete at the highest level.
“I know the field wasn’t better than me and I just never had the chance to show my full potential. But this season I just dedicated to it, put everything in it, and I pulled it off.”
He said he suffered some cramps but was grateful for the silver medal, adding he was happy with his consistency from the preliminaries.
Gayle, who was denied the chance to defend his title last year due to injuries, said the bronze medal gave him back his confidence but he was really hoping for a sweep of the medals.
“It’s a good day today; we got silver and bronze but I wanted one-two-three.” Breaking out into patois he added, “Di bwoy show up today and we haffi tek what we get.”
He said he got “excited when Pinnock jumped the 8.50m”, and said he had been doing well in training but admitted it was still difficult for him on the run-up since his injury, promising however that, come next year, he will be back to his best.