By Amy Tennery
EUGENE, Ore. (Reuters) -China’s Feng Bin put up the performance of her life to stun the women’s discus final at the World Championships on Wednesday, as Olympic champion American Valerie Allman settled for bronze.
Feng won off of her 69.12-metres opener, a personal best and her strongest performance of the season by a wide margin, as Croatia’s twice Olympic champion Sandra Perkovic secured the silver in a 68.45-metres second attempt.
“I am so excited and I have to say all opponents did a very good job today,” said Feng. “I did not expect this result coming to Eugene. I just wanted to show my best.”
With the home crowd urging her on, Allman rocketed the discus across the field on her third throw and she jumped with excitement at the performance but it was marked far short of Feng’s effort, and she fumbled her final try for 51.41.
The bespectacled, six-foot-tall Feng whipped across a final throw of 64.62 before thrusting her arms into the air, having completed the massive upset and secured China’s first gold in the event since Li Yanfeng in 2011.
“I am very excited about this result and want to share this excitement with my family and my friends,” Feng told reporters, after picking up her first world medal.
Reigning champion Yaime Perez of Cuba could not find her power, finishing seventh with a best throw of 63.07.
A medal felt all too familiar around Perkovic’s neck after two world titles, a bronze in Doha and a previous silver in 2015.
“My biggest rival this year – Valarie Allman – and I managed to beat her on the home soil,” she said.
“I did not expect the Chinese girl would beat us all. But I am also glad for her because she threw a huge PB and I think you just have to be lucky.
“We all deserve the red carpets.”
(Reporting by Amy Tennery in Eugene, Oregon; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)