Heptathlon: Theisen-Eaton, Melnichenko Vie for Worlds Gold

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Canada's Brianne Theisen-Eaton continued her climb up the heptathlon scoreboard at the world athletics championships in Moscow Tuesday, throwing the javelin a season-best distance to move into second place behind first-place Ukrainian Ganna Melnichenko.

MOSCOW, August 13 (R-Sport) - Canada's Brianne Theisen-Eaton continued her climb up the heptathlon scoreboard at the world athletics championships in Moscow Tuesday, throwing the javelin a season-best distance to move into second place behind first-place Ukrainian Ganna Melnichenko.

The 24-year-old Saskatchewan native started the day in fourth place after four events and rose to third with a personal best in the long jump. She will likely need a four-second victory over Melnichenko in the 800m, the seventh and final event, to unseat her for the gold medal.

Melnichenko won her javelin group with a mark of 41.87, a season best, for 703 points. Theisen-Eaton threw 45.64 for 776 points, good for 10th in her group.

Greek athlete Sofia Yfantidou had the top javelin throw of the day with 53.66, but she sits 23rd overall. France's Antoinette Nana Djimou Ida was second, reaching 52.47.

After six events, Melnichenko has 5,619 points while Theisen-Eaton, whose husband Ashton Eaton of the United States won the decathlon on Sunday, has 5,551. Daphne Shippers of the Netherlands sits third with 5,492 points and will be in a dogfight for the bronze medal with France’s Ida, Britain's Katarina Johnson-Thompson, Germany's Claudia Roth and American Sharon Day, who all sit inside a 54-point spread.

Theisen-Eaton finished 11th at the London 2012 Olympics, one place behind Melnichenko.

Melnichenko's personal-best 800m is 2:12.54, which she ran in June. Theisen-Eaton registered her season best at 2:11.32, also in June.

Whoever emerges with the gold, the medal will come with a caveat: Russian defending world champion Tatyana Chernova and London champion Jessica Ennis-Hill of Britain are both out of the Moscow championship with injuries.
The 800m races starts at 8:10 p.m. local time at Luzhniki stadium.

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