Cuba gears up for athletics World Championship in Moscow

Havana: Cuban athletes have intensified training for the 2013 IAAF World Championship to be held in Moscow Aug 10-18.

A total of 18 Cuban athletes have achieved the IAAF qualifying standards to register in the championship, reports Xinhua.

By July 12, Cubans had participated in 27 competitions, including the Diamond League, the Grand Prix, the Challenge and others, where they obtained 32 gold medals, 18 silver and 12 bronze, according to Cuban Athletics National Commissioner Jorge Luis Sanchez who said the competitions helped for the records` stability and their world ranking updating.

The group members include pole vaulter Yarisley Silva, triple jumpers Pedro Pablo Pichardo and Ernesto Reve, discus thrower Yarelis Barrios and javelin thrower Guillermo Martinez.

Silva, Olympic runner-up in London 2012, leads the world rankings this year with 4.90 metres. The 26-year-old pole vaulter has reached more than 4.70 metres in the official competitions between March 16 and July 8, to be above American Jennifer Suhr (4.80 metres) and Russian Yelena Isinvaeba (4.78 metres) as her main rivals.

Pichardo also leads the triple jump world ranking, with a record of 17.69 metre jump.

Discus thrower Barrios will have a more difficult task, though she has won three Olympic medals and has a record of 67.36 metres. She will have to do better than Croatian Sandra Perkovic (68.96 metres), Germans Nadine Muller (66.69) and Julia Fischer (66.04), as well as Cuban Yaimee Perez (66.01).

According to Cuban sports authorities, the final team will be announced July 29.


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