Team GB missed out on a maximum 11 points on Saturday when the 4x100m girls and have been struggling for form
DINA ASHER-SMITH is set to make her comeback at this weekend’s World Championship trials in a bid to get Britain’s 4x100m relay girls back on track.
The British team finished fourth at the European Team Championships yesterday notching up 269 points behind winners Germany on 321.50 points and Poland on 295 points.
Hosts France leap-frogged into third spot by just ONE point only after the final event of the competition, the men’s 4x400m.
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But Britain missed out on a maximum 11 points on Saturday when the 4x100m girls, who won Olympic bronze in Rio and were favourites to win here, bungled the final change-over and failed to finish.
Shannon Hylton, who was making her senior debut and was standing in for injured Asher-Smith, fluffed the hand-over to Darryl Neita after Asha Philip and Desiree Henry made a great start.
Asher-Smith, the reigning European 200m champion, suffered a broken foot back in February but will now compete in Birmingham next weekend in a bid to book an individual place in her favoured event at the World Championships in London in August.
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The 21-year-old would also be involved in the relay at the Olympic Stadium and her presence would make the team genuine medal contenders again, having just missed out on the podium at the last worlds in Beijing two years ago.
The bronze in Rio was the first time in 32 years the British women had won an Olympic medal in the event.
Neita, 20, admitted: “It’s important that Dina gets back. We have a really good rapport in the team. We were the perfect team in Rio and we really do need Dina back.
“To be part of the team to win a women’s sprint medal for the first time in 32 years . . . we are still so young as well, none of us has reached our peak yet and there is still so much to come. And winning the bronze medal gave us so much confidence on the world stage.”
British team performance manager Neil Black said: “Obviously it’s a big task for Dina as she is not going to know until she races and races repetitively.
“But I’ve spoken to her and she is in high spirits and excited to be returning to competition. We’re all going to wait with bated breath to see what happens.
“She’s open minded about the event and we will find out next weekend which event she actually competes in. Obviously the 200m is the thing she is intereted in for the worlds.”
Black also revealed that LAURA MUIR, expected to be the poster girl for London 2017, will NOT be at the world trials as she is still recovering from a foot injury although she is set to be handed a wildcard.
She had been planning to double up in the 1,500m and 5,000m in the Olympic Stadium but is now likely to just focus on the metric mile.
After a promising day on Saturday when Britain notched up six victories – despite fielding a team that included 14 athletes making their senior debuts – there were no first place finishes yesterday.
The women’s 4x400m managed fourth in 3:28.96 and the men sixth in 3:07.49 in the final event.