UK Athletics Championships 2024: Dina Asher-Smith wins 200m title as Keely Hodgkinson struggles

UK Athletics Championships 2024: Dina Asher-Smith wins 200m title as Keely Hodgkinson struggles

Dina Asher-Smith clocked a championship record to win the UK Athletics Championships for the 200metres in Manchester on Sunday.

Asher-Smith had opted to miss the preceding day’s 100m for fear of overloading herself in the weeks leading up to the Games.

In her absence, her close rival Darryll Neita won the sprint title. Neita doubled up over the 200m but, coming off the bend, Asher-Smith had a clear lead which Neita could not eat into.

Asher-Smith took the gold in a time of 22.18seconds, still some way off some of the fastest times in the world this year but an encouraging marker weeks out from the Olympics.

Afterwards, she said: “There has been a lot of big changes for me this year [moving to the States] but coming back to Britain has been nice. I have definitely missed it. I am very happy with today’s performance.”

Keely Hodgkinson is already assured her place in the 800m in the French capital so instead tried out in the 400m to see if she could sneak a play in the relay team.

She qualified sixth fastest for the final but dropped a place in the final itself as Amber Anning dominated the field to win in a time of 50.48seconds, a second slower than she has already achieved while training and competing in the United States this season.

Without Hodgkinson in the 800m field, the stage looked set for Jemma Reekie to win the British title but she was upstaged by a 17-year-old Phoebe Gill, one of the rising stars of British athletics.

Reekie managed to finish runner-up meaning she, Gill and Hodgkinson will all be selected when the team is officially announced on Friday.

Like Hodgkinson, Matt Hudson-Smith tinkered with another distance by switching the 400m for the 200m, and he proved a class apart by winning with a personal best of 20.34 and upstaging regular 200m runners like Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake.