October 1, 2019 / 10:34 PM / 10 months ago

Barber wins Australia's first javelin world title

Athletics - World Athletics Championships - Doha 2019 - Women's Javelin Throw Final - Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, Qatar - October 1, 2019. Australia's Kelsey-Lee Barber celebrates winning gold. REUTERS/Ibraheem Al Omari

DOHA (Reuters) - Kelsey-Lee Barber became the first Australian to win the javelin world title on Tuesday, clinching it with her last throw of the competition and ending one of the longest winning streaks in the sport.

The 28-year-old threw 66.56 meters to take her from fourth place to first and draw a huge cheer from the half-full Khalifa stadium.

China took silver and bronze with Liu Shiying throwing 65.88 and the in-form Lyu Huihui 65.49 respectively. Lyu had won her 12 previous meetings and had extended her own world-leading Asian record three times.

Barber had struggled even to reach for the 12-woman final, finishing 10th in qualifying.

“I was holding off my nerves yesterday waiting for the qualifying to see if I got through,” she said. “It shows that today is a new day, a clean slate and you have to throw big if you want to be the best.”

Writing by Brian Homewood; Editing by Toby Davis

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