European Team Championships: Croatia Finishes 5th in Varaždin

Daniela Rogulj

August 12, 2019 – The Croatia athletics team finished fifth in the Second League of the European Team Championships held this weekend in Varaždin.

After 40 disciplines, Croatian athletes scored 306 points, as did Latvia in fourth, though the Latvian team earned more first places, reports HRT.

Estonia finished in the first place and will be promoted to the First League after winning 336.5 points, while Slovenia came in second with 321 points and Denmark in third with 313 points.

Israel (8th), Cyprus (9th), Luxembourg (10th), Georgia (11th), and Malta (12th) dropped out of the Second League, while Serbia has been promoted to the Second League.

On Sunday, Croatia secured victories by Olympian gold medal javelin thrower Sara Kolak, and Dino Bošnjak who finished on top in the 3000-meter race. Kolak and Bošnjak join Sandra Perković, who was best discus thrower on Saturday.

Kolak justified her role as the favorite, although her score in Varaždin was still not her highest. However, a throw of 57.97 meters in the second series was enough for Kolak to compete.

And while Kolak’s victory was expected, Bošnjak very pleasantly surprised in the 3000-meter race. The Croatian representative led the run from the very beginning and in an excellent finish, he was more successful than the Danish representative who could only follow his rhythm. Bošnjak had time at the finish to celebrate his victory and slowed down significantly, so his winning result was 8:01.29 minutes in the end, though it could have been well under eight minutes.

On Sunday, the second place was won by Ivan Lončarek in the 100-meter hurdles, Marija Tolj in the shot-put, Ana Šimić in the high jump and Matea Parlov in the 5000-meters. Lončarek ran 13.53 seconds, Šimić jumped 1.94 meters, while Tolj threw 15.73 meters and Parlov, with a time of 16: 03.71 minutes, set a personal record.

A significant number of points for Croatia were secured by Sven Cepuš in the 800-meters with a time of 1:49.60 minutes, and the women’s 4×400 meter relay which finished in 3:40.82.

Fourth place was secured by Ivan Horvat in the pole vault (5.20 meters), Filip Mihaljević in the discus throw (62.30 meters) and Filip Svalina in the 3000-meters with hurdles (9:01.45). Filip Mičuda came in fifth of the hammer throw (62.42 meters), while the men’s 4×400 meter relay took the same position with a time of 3:10.31. Bojana Bjeljac came in sixth of the 1500- meters (4:21.88), while Nikola Anđelić in the 110 meters with hurdles (14.74), and Sanjin Šimić in the triple jump (15.43 meters), took seventh place.

The only three Croatian representatives to finish at the bottom of the standings on Sunday were the 17-year-old Veronika Drljačić in the 200-meters (24.69) and Zvonimir Ivasković in the 200-meters (21.92), who both finished 10th. Marija Ivanković in the long jump (5.31meters) placed 11th in her respective discipline.

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