Katarina Johnson-Thompson sits eighth in the heptathlon standings going into the final discipline at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene.
The Briton is on the brink of seeing her title defence fall short, with Anouk Vetter currently leading Nafissatou Thiam ahead of the 800m, which takes place at 2.55am BST.
Johnson-Thompson posted 39.18m in the javelin, the penultimate event, earning her 652 points.
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That took her overall tally to 5,387 points, 354 off Anna Hall (5,741) in third, while Vetter will be out to beat Thiam to gold later, holding a narrow 19-point lead (6,045 to 6,026) over the two-time Olympic champion and 2017 world champion.
Thiam’s 800m personal best (2:15.24) is around two-and-a-half seconds quicker than Vetter (2:17.71), meaning it could be a close-run race to take Johnson-Thompson’s crown. Vetter needs to stay within 1.36 seconds to beat Thiam.
At Tokyo 2020, Thiam beat Vetter to gold by 101 points, the Belgian picking up 38 more points than the Dutch athlete in the 800m – a total that would help the former surpass the latter this time around.
Meanwhile, third-placed Hall is unlikely trouble the pair despite boasting an 800m PB of 2:03.11 from this year – the American is 304 points off first.
Meanwhile, Johnson-Thompson – a strong 800m runner (PB 2:07.26) who could therefore rise back up the rankings – said earlier in the event: “It’s not nice, it’s not a place where I want to be at a Championships, especially as I know I can do so much better historically and I think I could have done better with a few tweaks. I’m proud of just being here.
“I got back into really hard training in the last six weeks but unfortunately I haven’t come out of the other side in the place I wanted to be.
“I’m still here, I’m still fighting and this is part of what I’m trying to do at this championships, be here, fight and be competitive.”
Johnson-Thompson – who ruptured her Achilles in December 2020 and then suffered a calf injury during Tokyo 2020 last year – was fifth in the opening 100m hurdles, 0.46 seconds off her personal best of 13.09.
Her high jump score was 1.83m (PB 1.98m), and she then threw 12.92m (PB 13.86m) in the shot put, ran 23.62s (PB 22.79s)in the 200m and posted 6.28m (PB 6.92m) in the long jump.
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