The women’s pole vault featured the deepest field in World Indoor Championships history, with nine women topping 4.55 meters (14 feet, 11 inches) and seven clearing 4.65/15-3. Yarisley Silva of Cuba was the only one of the seven surviving vaulters to miss at 4.65, so she sat in seventh place after clearing on her second attempt. But she reversed her position in the next round, when she was the only competitor to clear 4.70/15-5 on her first try. American Jenn Suhr had opened by clearing at 4.65 but passed at 4.70, a decision that may have cost her a medal as she – like the rest of the field – failed to clear 4.75/15-7 on three attempts. That left Silva as the gold medalist, while Russia’s Anzhelika Sidorova and Jirina Svobodova of the Czech Republic shared the silver medal, as both cleared 4.70 on their second tries. Brazil’s Fabiana Murer finished fourth after clearing 4.70 on her third attempt.
Maria Kuchina of Russia and Poland’s Kamila Licwinko dueled to the finish in a tight high jump competition that resulted in a dead heat that the jumpers chose not to break. The pair, along with Spain’s Ruth Beitia, Justina Kasprzycka of Poland and Sweden’s Emma Tregaro, were all perfect through three jumps. Former champion Blanka Vlasic of Croatia – trying to come back from two years of health problems – and Levern Spencer of St. Lucia were still alive at that point. Beitia and Kasprzycka both cleared 1.97/6-5½ on their first attempts to take the lead. Kuchina and Licwinko succeeded on their second tries while the other three jumpers dropped out. Kuchina and Licwinko then moved in front by clearing 2.00/6-6¾ on their first attempts. Beitia got over on her second try to take third place, while Kasprzycka missed three times. All three remaining jumpers missed three times apiece at 2.02/6-7½. Rather than compete in a jump-off, Kuchina and Licwinko agreed to share the title, producing the first-ever gold medal tie in World Indoor Championships history.
In preliminary competition, seven women qualified for the final by clearing 1.95/6-4¾, with only Beitia doing so without a miss. Two more women, including two-time champion Vlasic, qualified at 1.92/6-3½. Spencer set a national record when she topped 1.95.
Eloyse Lesueur of France leapfrogged from second to first in the fourth round and held on to earn the women’s long jump gold medal. Lesueur led after one round with a leap of 6.72/22-½, but Great Britain’s Katrina Johnson-Thompson took charge in the next round after jumping a personal best 6.81/22-4. The distance held until Lesueur’s winning leap of 6.85/22-5½. Serbia’s Ivana Spanovic settled into third place in the opening round and never left the spot, eventually reaching 6.77/22-2½ on her final try to secure the bronze. Spanovic and Shara Proctor both jumped 6.68/21-11 in the first round, but the British jumper never improved her distance and finished fourth, just ahead of American Tori Polk at 6.61/21-8¼.
Spanovic led all qualifiers with a first attempt measuring 6.77, the same distance she obtained in the final the next day. Darya Klishina of Russia was the only other jumper to beat the automatic qualifying distance of 6.70/21-11¾, as she reached 6.76/22-2.
The women’s triple jump medals were basically decided in the second round, when Ekaterina Koneva of Russia took the lead for good by leaping 14.46/47-5¼. She couldn’t improve on her distance, but it held up to give her the gold medal. First-round leader Olga Saladuha of Ukraine led briefly in the second round at 14.38/47-2 before Kenova flew past her. Saladuha eventually closed the gap with a 14.45/47-4¾ jump in round 4 but had to settle for the silver medal. Jamaica’s Kimberly Williams also led the pack twice, early in the first and second rounds, before dropping into the third spot by the end of round 2. Williams reached 14.39/47-2½ on her final try to wrap up the bronze.
Williams and Saladuha were the only jumpers to beat the automatic qualifying mark of 14.30/46-10¾. Williams leaped a then-season best 14.35/47-1 on her first try. Saladuha also qualified on her first attempt, squeaking through at 14.31/46-9¼.
More from the 2014 World Indoor Championships: