China finishes in second position at IAAF youth athletics event

2017-07-17 02:51:34 GMT2017-07-17 10:51:34(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

NAIROBI, July 16 (Xinhua) -- China on Sunday bagged three more medals to finish in second position behind South Africa at the World Under-18 Athletics Championships that ended in Nairobi on Sunday.

By the end of day four, China lay in third position out of over 160 nations that featured in the event with four gold medals, two silver medals and one bronze medal behind first-placed South Africa which had four gold medals, two silver medals and two bronze medals.

Cuba was in second position with four gold medals, two silver medals and one bronze medal.

However, with Gong Luying's gold medal after a leap of 6.37 meters in the girls' long jump; Cai Qing's silver-medal winning throw of 57.01 meters in the girls' javelin and Dai Qianqian's hurl of 54.96 meters in the same event, China was able to alter the medals bracket to finish with five gold medals.

International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) officials said the competition was the best-attended in the 20 years of the championship's existence after over 60,000 spectators attended the last day of the track and field extravaganza.

"In my many years with this event, I have never seen such an outpouring of support from the host nation. We thank Nairobi for organizing this event. It is sad for the championship to end in such a fashion," IAAF's Media Operations Manager told Xinhua.

Hosts Kenya finished in fourth position with four gold medals, seven silver medals and four bronze medals.

The IAAF Council in 2016 decided to discontinue the youth aid and will instead work with area associations to find a more appropriate competition structure for assisting the career development of U18 athletes.

Speaking after the decision after the IAAF Council meeting in Rio de Janeiro on August 20, 2016, IAAF President Sebastian Coe said: "We decided it's not the best pathway for those athletes at that stage of their career."

The event also saw the staging, for the first time, the mixed relay that replaced the men's and women's 4x400m relays.

The event was highly successful despite the USA, Britain, New Zealand, Australia, Canada and Switzerland having pulled out, citing security concerns.

However, the five-day extravaganza ended without an incident after Kenya deployed the most elaborate security cordon ever seen in recent times to secure the games.

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