British heptathlete Katarina Johnson-Thompson (Getty Images) © Copyright
General News Talence, France

Johnson-Thompson, Mayer and Shkurenev lead Talence entries

A handful of the world’s top all-round athletes will head to the Decastar meeting in Talence on 19-20 September for the final IAAF Combined Events Challenge competition of 2015.

European indoor champion Katarina Johnson-Thompson leads the heptathlon field. The Briton will be keen to end her year on a high after the crushing disappointment she endured at the IAAF World Championships in Beijing where she recorded three fouls in the heptathlon long jump.

Dutch duo Nadine Broersen, the world indoor champion, and Nadine Visser, the world junior bronze medallist, will be looking to become the first Decastar winners from the Netherlands.

Also in the field are Hungary’s Gyorgyi Zsivoczky-Farkas and Xenia Krizsan, Ukraine’s Anastasiya Mokhnyuk, who finished second in Talence last year, and 2013 European indoor silver medallist Yana Maksimava.

The decathlon field also includes some athletes who will feel they have something to prove in the wake of the IAAF World Championships.

European indoor champion Ilya Shkurenev set a PB of 8538 in Beijing but just missed out on a medal by 23 points. The Decastar meeting offers the Russian a chance not only of victory, but to extend his lead at the top of the Combined Events Challenge standings.

Kevin Mayer was forced to miss the World Championships through injury so the Frenchman will be keen to test his form against athletes who were there in Beijing.

The same is true of Belgium’s Hans van Alphen, twice a winner at the Decastar meeting.

Others in the line-up include South African record-holder Willem Coertzen, Pan American Games silver medallist Kurt Felix and Ukraine’s Oleksiy Kasyanov.