SPORTS

Greek athletes gearing up for next month’s European Championship

Another two Greek athletes have qualified for the European Indoor Athletics Championships next month in Turin, Italy, after the National Championship held in Paeania last weekend. Costas Douvalidis clocked a personal best of 7.74 seconds in the 60-meter hurdles and Constantina Efentaki won the 3,000-meter in 8 minutes, 58.12 seconds. They join two other Greeks, long jumper Louis Tsatoumas and pole vaulter Nicole Kyriakopoulou, who have already qualified for the Turin event, to take place on March 6-8. Other notable performances in the weekend’s championship were the personal best by Paraskevi Papachristou in the triple jump with 14.16 meters, Kyriakopoulou’s 4.35-meter vault, Tonia Stergiou and Maroula Papageorgiou’s tie at 1.86 meters in the high jump and the 2.25 meters jumped by Cypriot high jumper Kyriakos Ioannou. In the men’s pole vault, Dimitris Patsoukakis won with 5.40 meters, beating off a challenge by Stefanos Koufidis with 5.30 meters. Tsatoumas confirmed his consistency with a jump of 8.13 meters. This year he has made the world’s leading performance to date at 820 meters. In team performances, Panellinios was the champion in the men’s division, while Enosis Atromitou Rethymniakou, from Crete, won the women’s championship. Track and field federation SEGAS yesterday named 22 athletes (11 men and 11 women) to represent Greece in the Balkan Indoor Championship at the Peace and Friendship Stadium in Neo Faliron on Saturday.