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Silver, Bronze Glory

By BRENT STUBBS Senior Sports Reporter bstubbs@tribunemedia.net A first, second, fifth and pair of eighth place finishes in the finals, including a series of season's best performances for the Bahamas, were recorded at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Istanbul, Turkey, over the weekend. Grand Bahamian Demetrius Pinder and Eleuthera native Chris 'Fireman' Brown earned an historic silver and bronze medal respectively in the 400 metres on Saturday. Team Bahamas was managed by Roosevelt Thompson and coached by Keith Parker. "Outstanding, second to none," was how Thompson summed up the team's performance. "We had five persons into the finals, quite a number of SBs (season's bests), so I think the team performed remarkably well. "We are sorry that we had to withdraw the relay team but that was for the betterment of the quarter-milers as they still had to go in their individual races. Some people felt it hard but, at the end of the day, we felt we did the right thing." The decision not to run the combo of Michael Mathieu, La'Sean Pickstock, Jameson Strachan and Pinder in the 4 x 400 relay heats on Saturday morning worked in favour of Pinder and Brown as they came up with the silver and bronze in the final. Nery Brenes of Costa Rica clocked 45.11 seconds for a new championship record to snatch the gold and earned $40,000. Pinder got the silver in a season's best of 45.34 for $20,000 and Brown's SB of 45.90 claimed the bronze and $10.000. "I gave God thanks and praise. I came in here to defend my title. It didn't happen," said Brown in an interview on the championships' website. "I gave it my best. It was only three medals and I got one, so I'm proud of that." The pair of medals placed the Bahamas in a two-way tie for 16th in the medal table with Belarus and Turkey. The other three appearances in the finals pushed the Bahamas up to 14th with Italy. Surprisingly, Jamaica also got a pair of medals but Veronica Campbell-Brown's gold enabled them to end up tied with Australia and Morocco for 8th on the medal table. Jamaica was tied with Cuba and the Czech Republic just ahead of the Bahamas for 11th on the placing chart. Stuart injured On Sunday, Bianca Stuart suffered a strained hamstring and had to withdraw after she opened the competition with a leap of 4.71 metres or 15-feet, 5 1/2-niches. She went on to scratch the next four and opted not to take the final attempt as she ended up in eighth place. American Brittany Reese captured the gold in a championship record leap of 7.23m (23-8 3/4). "It was awesome up until the final," said Stuart, who advanced with the fourth best jump. "I experienced a little sprain in my hamstring during the competition, so I had to withdraw my last jump. "That was quite unfortunate. I was trying to push through the pain but I didn't want to injure it any further because this is a long season. I didn't want to jeopardise my future." Sturrup fifth Veteran sprinter Chandra Sturrup continues to improve on her times in each of the three rounds of the women's 60m. However, in the final, her best time of 7.19s was good enough for fifth. Campbell-Brown took the gold in a world-leading time of 7.01s, while Murielle Ahoure ran a national record of 7.04s for the silver. American Tianna Madison was the bronze medallist in 7.09s. "I was going to take each round one by one and I did that and made it to the final," Sturrup said. "Unfortunately, I didn't do as well as I would have liked to do in the final, but overall I'm still happy with it." Despite not getting her third medal to add to the gold she got in Lisbon in 2001 and the silver in Paris in 1997, Sturrup said she was still pleased because she never ran faster in each round before. "So I was happy that each round I ran faster than the other one," she said. "But in reality, I was hoping to run at least 7.0s and hopefully medal." Sturrup, 41, noted that her rivals have been running 7.0s all season long so she knew it would be a fast race. She said she now has to go back to the drawing board and get ready to run 40 more metres in the 100 outdoors. Barry eighth As he continues to get better in each meet this year, Trevor Barry came up with a season's best of 2.31m (7-7) that placed him eighth in the men's high jump final. The gold went to Dimintrios Chondrokoukis of Greece with 2.33m (7-7), while Russia got the silver and bronze from Andrey Silnov (2.33m or 7-7 3/4) and Ivan Ukhov (2.31m or 7-3 1/4) respectively. While Barry advanced to the final in fifth place, Donald Thomas got eliminated after he was tied with three other competitors at 2.22m (7-3 1/4) in the preliminaries.

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