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Two make Men’s High Jump final

DAEGU, South Korea – When Donald Thomas failed on his first attempt in qualifying for the Men’s High Jump final early this morning in Daegu, South Korea, there were hardly any worries for him.

The 2007 World Champion had been in this predicament and on this global stage before so he knew what he needed to do. Thomas had to rely on his second attempt at his opening height, 2.16m (7’ 1”), just to move on in the competition, and eventually went on to have a best qualifying height of 2.31m (7’ 7”) to move on to the final.

“Qualifying is always the most difficult part and I just want to give God thanks and praise for allowing me to get through qualification. I’m really thankful for that,” he said after the competition.

“I always thought that 2.31 would get you into the final so I had my mind set on that. A lot of guys out there are really jumping so you have to come prepared to jump on every attempt. At this point, I’m physically and mentally fit, so the sky’s the limit.”

Thomas will be joined by Trevor Barry who will be making his first World Championships final, clearing a best height of 2.28m (7’ 5-3/4”) in qualification as the 13th International Association of Athletic Federations’ (IAAF) World Outdoor Championships continued here at Daegu Stadium yesterday.

“It feels real good – one down and one more to go. I just want to continue to represent the country well and get better and better,” said Barry yesterday.

“I was disappointed when I didn’t get over the bar at 2.31m. I haven’t cleared that height yet but Thursday is as good as any day to do it. I’m going to put my best foot forward and overcome that lil barrier,” he added.

With that height of 2.28m, Barry finished in a three-way tie for 11th, and in the qualification round, at least the 12 best jumpers move on to Thursday’s final or jumpers who reached the automatic qualifying height of 2.31m.

It seems like Thomas and Barry like to do things together. They finished first and second, respectively, at both the Commonwealth and Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games last year, and now, they’re both moving on to the Daegu World Championships final.

Barry, the country’s number two jumper behind Thomas, actually looked better in qualifying… at least at the lower heights. He looked relaxed, clearing his first three heights with ease.

Thomas, on the other hand, needed two jumps to clear his opening height, and then struggled again at 2.25m (7’ 4-1/2”) – a height that he has cleared on numerous occasions. He needed three attempts to get over the bar at that height.

“On the lower bars I tend to lose a little bit of focus. I think I’m just anxious for the bar to get up higher so I don’t take the lower bars as seriously as I should,” said Thomas. “I had some problems in my approach as well but I was able to correct that and get through. Hopefully, I can carry that same momentum into the final.”

Barry bowed out of the competition at 2.31m, barely missing on all three attempts. Thomas cleared the automatic standard for the final, 2.31m, on his second attempt. Both jumpers are looking forward to Thursday’s final.

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