Diamond League Doha 2023: The Diamond Rush Begins for Africa

Hugues-Fabrice-Zango-Diamond League Doha 2023
Diamond League Doha 2023: The Diamond Rush Begins for Africa

In Doha this Friday the 14th edition of the Diamond League, the largest annual circuit of athletics which is contested in 14 stages will open. As every year, some African runners are expected to shine on the most beautiful tracks of the world. Emmanuel Korir (800m), Tobi Amusan (100m hurdles) and Faith Kipyegon (1500m) will try to get their 3rd diamond in a row.

In their diaries, the world's greatest athletes have surely ticked off the 16th and 17th of September, hoping that these days will find them in Eugene, USA. It will be the finals of the 14th edition of Diamond League. But to be there, it will be necessary to get the maximum points in each of the disciplines. There will be 13 stages before the final that will consecrate the best of the Diamond League circuit. And it starts this Friday in Doha, Qatar.

Faith Kipyegon on the track
Thirteen events are on the menu. Winner of the 1500m for the last two years, Faith Kipyegon is looking for a third diamond in a row. The Kenyan, twice Olympic champion in the distance, will be at the start of the event, the last one on the program of this stage in Qatar. She hopes to break the world record in the 1500m this year, and her main competitors today will be the Australian Jessica Hull, who is currently in top form, and the young Ethiopian Freweyni Hailu.

On the other hand, the Kenyan Emmanuel Korir, also winner of the two previous editions of the Diamond League on 800m, is absent. But other Africans will be at the start of the double lap and in search of victory. There are the two Algerians Djamel Sedjati and Slimane Moula who finished well last season and the Moroccan Moad Zahafi.

A high-flying 3000m
The toughest race between African stars will certainly be the 3000m. The Moroccan Soufiane El Bakkali, Olympic steeplechase champion and winner of the Diamond League 2022, will be in the starting blocks. And as main competitors, he will have among others the Kenyan Timothy Cheruiyot who was world champion of the 1500m on the same track of Doha in 2019; the Ethiopians Selemon Barega and Lamecha Girma, respectively Olympic champion of the 10000m and Olympic vice-champion of the 3000m steeple.

The specialist of horizontal jumps, Hugues-Fabrice Zango, will also have a great competition in the triple jump. The Burkinabe, vice world champion and Olympic bronze medallist, will face the best of the discipline. The Portuguese, Olympic champion and world champion in title, is engaged. The Cubans Andy Diaz (Diamond League 2022 winner) and Lazaro Martinez (World Indoor Champion 2022) as well as the Chinese Yaming Zhu (Olympic vice-champion) will also take part in the competition. Even the American Christian Taylor, double Olympic champion (2012 and 2016) and quadruple world champion, slowed down by injuries in the last two years will make his return on the vault of Doha where he was world champion in 2019.

The great African sprinters absent
While they are making an incredible start to the season, the great African sprinters will unfortunately be absent in Doha. The Liberian Joseph Fahnbulleh will be the only African at the start of the 200m amidst the lords of the distance Andre de Grasse, Kenny Bednarek, Michael Norman and Aaron Brown.

In the women's 100m, no African is engaged. Similarly in the 100m hurdles. The queen of the discipline, the Nigerian Tobi Amusan is indeed the biggest absentee of this first stage of the 14th edition of the Diamond League.

Diamond League Doha 2023: the events
Track: 100m (women), 200m (men), 400m (women), 800m (men), 1500m (women), 100m hurdles (women), 400m hurdles (men), 3000m (men), 3000m steeplechase (women)

Competitions: pole vault (women), discus throw (men), javelin throw (men), high jump (men), triple jump (men)

African winners of the Diamond League in 2022
Men: Emmanuel Korir (KEN, 800m), Nicholas Kipkorir (KEN, 3000m / 5000m), Soufiane el-Bakkali (MAR, 3000m steeplechase)

Women: Mary Moraa (KEN, 800m), Faith Kipyegon (KEN, 1500m), Beatrice Chebet (KEN, 3000m / 5000m), Tobi Amusan (Nigeria, 100m hurdles), Werkuha Getachew (ETH, 3000m steeple).

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