27 September, 2019

Five of the best: Diamond World Champions

  • © Jiro Mochizuki

  • © Victah Sailer

In the last ten years, a number of athletes have been crowned both world champion and Diamond League champion in the same season. As the IAAF World Championships begin in Doha this weekend, we take a look back at five of the best Diamond League and World Championships doubles.

Christian Taylor - 2015 & 2017

One of several athletes who have won the Diamond Trophy and the World Championships gold medal in more than one season, it took American triple jump star Christian Taylor a few attempts before he finally managed to do the double for the first time in 2015. 

World champion in Daegu in 2011, a 21-year-old Taylor was beaten to the Diamond Trophy by Britain's Phillips Idowu. In 2013, he won the Diamond League crown but missed out on the world title as his title defence ended with a disappointing fourth place in Moscow. 

In 2015, he finally managed to win both prizes in the same season. An incredible 18.21m jump in the world championship final in Beijing left him just eight centimetres off the world record, and a few weeks later in Brussels he leapt 17.59 to claim the Diamond Trophy. 

Two years later, Taylor defended both titles as he was crowned world champion for a third time in London and secured a sixth Diamond Trophy with another victory in Brussels.

Valerie Adams - 2011 & 2013

Despite the best efforts of Tom Walsh in recent years, Valerie Adams remains the greatest shot putter ever to come out of New Zealand, and she has proven as much on both the Diamond League and World Championship stage. 

In 2011, she won her third world title in Daegu with a championship record equalling 21.24m effort, and won a second Diamond Trophy in Zurich a few weeks later.

Her record-breaking year in both competitions came two years later, however, as she did the double again in 2013. Another gold medal in Moscow made her the most successful female shot putter in history and the first woman to win four straight world titles. The following month in Zurich, she hurled a meeting record of 20.98m to take what was then also a record-equalling fourth Diamond Trophy. 

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce - 2013 & 2015

Jamaican sensation Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce remains the only athlete so far ever to have done the double double. In 2013, she won the 100m and 200m titles both at the World Championships and in the Diamond League. 

Utterly dominant in 2013, Fraser-Pryce won at six of the seven Diamond League meetings and already had the Diamond Trophy in the bag by the time she headed to Moscow for the World Championships. 

There, she won both gold medals, clocking an astounding 0.22 second lead over the rest of the field in the 100m final. It would remain the only time that Fraser-Pryce managed the double double, though she also won the 100m world and Diamond League titles in 2015. 

Sally Pearson - 2017

After her injury troubles in 2015 and 2016, Sally Pearson made an incredible return to the very top of the tree in the women's 100m hurdles in 2017. 

The Australian, by then already a well-decorated veteran with her Olympic and world championship titles from 2011 and 2012, stormed to victory over long-time rival Dawn Harper Nelson at the London championships, before crowning a marvellous season in the Diamond League Final as she beat Sharika Nelvis by a hair's breadth to claim her first ever Diamond Trophy. 

Faith Kipyegon -2017

The undisputed queen of the 1500m in 2016 and 2017, Faith Kipyegon completed her world championships and Diamond League double with victories in two dramatic finals in 2017. 

At the world championships, the Kenyan star held off the likes of Jenny Simpson, Caster Semenya and Laura Muir to win a thrilling race, while in Brussels a few weeks later she locked horns with Sifan Hassan to light up a dimly lit Diamond League final. 

A major power cut in Brussels disrupted the final for long periods, but a combination of back-up generators and 1500m fireworks saved the night in the Belgian capital. Kipyegon edged Hassan by less than two tenths of a second in the end to claim her first Diamond Trophy. 

Absent from the circuit due to pregnancy in 2018, Kipyegon returned to winning ways in Stanford earlier this season, and will be looking to defend her world title in Doha.