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Ivorians coast to 60m glory

OUT OF AFRICA: Murielle Ahouré (right) with Marie-Josée Ta Lou

YEARS OF hard work paid off for Ivory Coast sprinter Murielle Ahouré when she won the 60mfFinal at the World Indoor Championships in England's second city (Mar 2).

Ahouré, 30, told the media after her win over compatriot Marie-Josée Ta Lou: "I'm so happy, I've trained so hard for this and that medal is for my coach and my team that have trained me so hard.

The Ivorian registered 6.97 seconds to win her global honour and added: "The most important thing I knew would be getting out of the blocks and executing my race, focusing on my lane. "It's huge to get gold and silver. The Ivory Coast is on top, we're so happy and hopefully soon we'll be able to take over the whole podium.

"This last year has been so difficult with my father (who has died of cancer). I knew he was watching from up there. I was talking to him before the race, saying 'please Dad help me in the race.' I couldn't get a gold medal when he was alive. I have so much pent-up up emotion now."

Ta Lou, who said she only came to the meeting work on her start, said:"I'm just happy because when I came here I just wanted a medal. The indoor season is not my best, I hit that when the summer comes around.

"For me I have a big finish I just did what I needed to do and when I finished it was a wonderful feeling, but my best is the outdoor season.

"Everyday I say that the Ivory Coast is good and I really believe that. I was happy to see Murielle in gold and I'm happy to see two girls representing us on the podium."

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