After the ladies, there comes now the turn of the gentlemen and time to pick the top male performer on the arena of Istanbul at the end of last week. There is a wide range of choices available starting with the big guns as Aston Eaton ran over both the opposition and the world record with a mighty 6645pts in the heptathlon, great Bernard Lagat timed his race to perfection to hold off the younger challenges of Augustine Choge and Mo Farah in a highly tactical 3000m, Renaud Lavillenie finally fended off a resurgent Brad Walker in the skies of pole vault and Justin Gatlin evoked images of his grandeur of old to dominate the men’s 60m in 6.46 secs.
Nevertheless, surprises seemed to be the order of the day as Aries Merritt got it right when it mattered on a wishy-washy build-up through the rounds to stun Xiang Liu over the hurdles, Dimitris Hondrokoukis must have been hardly fancied in any quarters to steal a narrow win over very much the who-is-who of men’s high jump, Ryan Whiting struck a stunning late winner over David Storl right when the shot put contest looked like heading the German’s way and ‘overlooked’ Costarican Nery Brenes forced Kirani James into the shadows on a searing run of 45.13 secs in the 400m.
Christian Taylor‘s defeat at the hands of countryman Will Claye, who pulled together a superb series, in the triple jump would not so much strike as a surprise on the form books as over the manner of it, having opened out to a seeming gold medal banker of 17.63m before the latter came back with a massive 17.70m in the second round.
So whom would you pick as top man in Istanbul?