Mar 2 2013
Holly Bleasdale cliamed Britain's first title at the European Indoor Championships, with team-mate James Dasaolu agonisingly close to making it a golden double in Gothenburg.
Bleasdale won gold in the pole vault following a dramatic jump-off with defending champion Anna Rogowska after both athletes had failed with three attempts at 4.72 metres and could not be separated on countback.
Dasaolu and France's Jimmy Vicaut were also inseparable in terms of time in the 60m final, but a photo-finish gave Vicaut the title and meant Dasaolu had to settle for silver, with both men given the same world-leading time of 6.48 seconds.
Britain still face an uphill task to match the target set by head coach Peter Eriksson of improving on the nine medals won in Paris two years ago, however, with Olympic bronze medallist Robbie Grabarz only sixth in the high jump and Shara Proctor denied a bronze medal in the long jump by just two centimetres in the final round.
Bleasdale, Britain's first-ever European pole vault champion, revealed she initially thought she had finished second.
"I knew they did them (jump-offs) but I've never ever been in one before," said the 21-year-old, who was sixth at the London Olympics but came into the competition as number one in Europe. "I thought I had just come second so I was waving to the crowd and then they told me I had to do a jump-off.
"I didn't really know what one was but I am glad we did it. We had the option to share the gold medal or do a jump-off and I wanted to do a jump-off. I wanted the gold medal to myself. I was in the moment and felt really good, and felt if I got my jump together I could clear the bar easily."
Dasaolu, 25, said afterwards: "I'm still taking it in that I've run 6.48, which is a really really quick time, and on top of that I got a silver. At the beginning of the championships I didn't think 6.48 would get a silver but I am just happy to be injury-free and enjoying competing. I haven't really seen the photo-finish, I will have to look back at it.
"I knew I was going to go 6.50 low but it's just nice to dip below that. It's my first world lead ever so I am extremely happy and hope I can carry this on to the outdoors."