ERME Valley Harriers athlete Will Battershill has reached the IAAF World Youth Championships 2,000m steeplechase final in Cali, Colombia.
Battershill claimed the last spot in Sunday’s showpiece event by clocking five minutes and 56.35 seconds in the heats on Friday.
The 17-year-old Ivybridge Community College pupil, whose personal best is 5.51:57, was seventh in his heat and 15th overall out of the 33 competitors.
The top four qualifiers were from either Kenya or Ethiopia and all ran under 5:42.02. Their fast pace caused problems for the rest of the athletes.
Battershill, on his Great Britain debut, ended up running a lonely race as the top two in his heat split the field up early on. However, he covered the last 100m strongly to progress to Sunday’s final.
The Erme Valley athlete said afterwards: “It was hotter and quicker than I ever thought.
“Unfortunately, I ended up between two packs so I couldn’t take advantage of the other guys and tuck behind them so I was basically running on my own. I gave it everything and I’m glad to qualify for the final.”