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Jake Wightman ‘relieved’ to win 1500m bronze as bid for golden hat-trick ends

Wightman had hoped to add to his World Championship win but was passed by Oliver Hoare and Timothy Cheruiyot on the final straight.

Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games – Day Nine
Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games – Day Nine

World champion Jake Wightman admits he did “as good as I could have” as he missed out on a stunning summer hat-trick after coming third in the 1500m at the Commonwealth Games.

The 28-year-old Scot took bronze in Birmingham on Saturday behind Australia’s Oliver Hoare and Kenya’s Timothy Cheruiyot after being passed on the home straight.

He was hoping to continue his unique treble quest – after July’s World Championships victory – but must now refocus for the 800m at the European Championships later this month.

“That was as good as I could have done,” said Wightman, who ran three minutes 30.53 seconds. “I didn’t want to be a pedestrian and be running for minor medals. I wanted to make a statement but I didn’t feel anywhere near as good as I did a couple of weeks ago.

“I knew when I went I was going to have a tough home straight but hoped everyone else would be feeling the same.

“Initially I was pretty disappointed but if I told myself I would come back two weeks after winning the world champs and in a similar field pick up a bronze I’d be pretty happy.  It’s mentally so tough to come back from that.

“To get a bronze is a relief, to have something to show for the shape I’m in.

“I put it on the line. To hang on for a bronze, I’m pleased. I hope I don’t get shot down too much for not having won it being a world champion.

“People don’t realise how high that World Championships was, two weeks is nothing to have to reset. I’m not buzzing but I’m relieved.

“I was hanging on in the home straight, as opposed to feeling strong. I felt pretty vulnerable.”

Wightman stunned Olympic champion Jakob Ingebrigtgsen to win in Eugene last month as dad and coach Geoff commentated on the race at Hayward Field.

Jake Wightman
Jake Wightman led heading into home straight but ended up settling for third (Tim Goode/PA)

Wightman senior was again the announcer at the Alexander Stadium and watched as his son made a move with around 300m to go but he was overhauled by Hoare and Cheruiyot.

Soon after, England’s Nick Miller won gold in the hammer with a throw of 78.43m to defend his 2018 title.

He said: “I’m incredibly proud, I’m sure we’ll have a few more later. I’ve had a lot of injury and illness, it’s nice to take a turn and have a positive outcome.

“I feel we’re in a good place moving forward.”

Earlier,  England’s men’s 4x100m relay squad of Jona Efoloko, Harry Aikines-Aryeetey, Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake and Ojie Edoburun won their heat to reach Sunday’s final in 38.48 seconds.

Asha Philip, Imani-Lara Lansiquot, Bianca Williams, Ashleigh Nelson progressed to the women’s final by finishing second in their heat in 42.72 seconds.

Morgan Lake finished fourth in the high jump with England team-mate Zak Seddon eighth in the 3,000m steeplechase.

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