BEIJING (Reuters) - German Christina Schwanitz confirmed her status as the form shot-putter of 2015 by winning her first world championship gold medal with a throw of 20.37 meters on Saturday.
The 29-year-old disappointed the home crowd at the Bird’s Nest stadium by edging Gong Lijiao into second place with her third throw, leaving the Chinese to take silver on the back of her opening effort of 20.30m.
American Michelle Carter threw 19.76m to beat Anita Marton, who bettered Hungary’s national record with her best attempt of 19.48m, and take the bronze medal.
New Zealander Valerie Adams, who won gold at the last four world championships, elected to skip the meeting so she could undergo shoulder and elbow surgeries with an eye on her Olympic title defense in Rio de Janeiro next year.
“I must be one of the happiest people in the stadium,” a laughing Schwanitz said, the German flag draped over her shoulders.
“The feeling is indescribable. It’s unreal. I couldn’t really see how I would do it.”
Asked how she managed to surpass Gong’s throw by seven centimeters, Schwanitz quipped: “Seven centimeters, that’s hard core!
“I really concentrated, really focused. I knew I wasn’t as nervous as she was and I know that in the world championships nothing is impossible.
“I was in a more relaxed position than I had ever been in before.
“I’ll probably have a few beers with my trainer tonight.”
Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Pritha Sarkar