Ricketts eyes World Champs after bagging big win at IAAF Diamond League

After literally putting on the performance of her life to bag gold and the US$50,000 winner’s prize at the IAAF Diamond League in Zurich, Switzerland earlier today, Jamaican triple-jumper Shanieka Ricketts has now turned her sights to the World Athletics Championships which will be held in Doha, Qatar in September.

Triple-jumper Shanieka Ricketts holding the flag after securing gold at the IAAF Diamond League in Zurich, Switzerland.
Triple-jumper Shanieka Ricketts proudly displays the Jamaican flag after securing gold at the IAAF Diamond League in Zurich, Switzerland

“At the world championships, I definitely want to be on the podium.  I don’t care what colour medal it is; I just need to be on the podium,” she told reporters in an interview following her win.

“I have to right now; I have to get it today.  I have to jump big.”

— Jamaican triple-jumper Shanieka Ricketts

The win was the first for the 27-year-old at the Diamond League championship.  She scored big with a personal best jump of 14.93 metres, eclipsing favourite Yulimar Rojas of Venezuela, who finished in second place – evoking a cheerful congratulatory tweet from the IAAF.

Ricketts said there was only one thing running in her mind as she made the deciding jump, and that was that she was in a now-or-never situation.

“I have to right now; I have to get it today.  I have to jump big.  I was hoping because you never know when you will get the big jump, so you just have to go with the same optimism every single competition, and hope it will come on the day,” she said in explaining her energy at the time.

“At the world championships…I don’t care what colour medal it is; I just need to be on the podium”

— Jamaican triple-jumper Shanieka Ricketts
Jamaican triple-jumper Shanieka Ricketts in the final round of the IAAF Diamond League.

“It was the best competition of my life,” the elated athlete said.  “My first Diamond League win and a personal best on my last jump; because Rojas regained lead on her last attempt so I had to get a personal best in order to win the Diamond League and that’s what I did at the last attempt.”