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Mutola sends out 800 metres warning


Mozambique's Maria Mutola qualifies a second clear of her 800m rivals but Grace Ebor is after a world record.

Maria Mutola

Maria Mutola runs a good first heat

Mutola (2:01.87) led home a fast second heat which also saw Susan Scott qualify automatically (2:02.82) for the semi-finals as well as Marian Burnett (2:03.31) and Emma Davies (2:04.02) qualifying because of their times.

The first heat, run in front of a full house in Manchester, was won by Faith Macharia (2:03.88). Melissa de Leon (2:04.65) also qualified.

Macharia commented: 的知 happy with my performance. I won and I think I知 going to improve. I知 going to try to win the final. I知 preparing to get a medal.

Grace Ebor (2:03.12) ran a season's best to take first place in the third heat. Much fancied Tamsyn Lewis (2:03.40) also qualified comfortably.

Ebor was unphased by her rivals' performances: 的知 looking forward to getting to the final. Not just my final position, but getting a good time... and to break the world record.

A tightly contested fourth heat was won by Diane Cummins (2:04.09) with Jo Fenn (2:04.17) taking second place. The competition between the runners produced three additional qualifiers - Charmaine Howells (2:04.45), Anny Christofidou (2:04.48) and Anna Ndege (2:05.13).

Afterwards Fenn said: 的 had to make sure I qualified for the semi-final. It was quite a nice first lap. I was in the lead as I had the inside lane so I ran wide so someone would take the pace on. I felt really strong down the home straight and I was aware of what was going on in the race.

The final heat of the session saw Agnes Samaria (2:03.04) and Charlotte Moore (2:03.38) qualify automatically. They were joined by fastest loser Michelle Ballantine (2:03.66) who clocked a season's best also.

Moore's time was the second quickest time she had ever run. She smiled: 的 just went out to enjoy it and the time was amazing. The crowd was great. I had nothing to lose.

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