Dani Samuels at the World Championships in 2015. Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty ImagesAustralian discus throwerDani Samuels has described the decision from officials to allow her to throw in torrential rain as “insane”, later complaining about conditions that led to a delay in the competition at the Rio Olympics.
Nanjing Night Net

While Samuels still qualifiedfor Tuesday’s semi-finals with the second-best throw in her group (64.46 metres) and fourth overall, the Australian botched her first attempt after losing grip on the wet discus.

As rain bucketed down, and after watching her first attempt rattle the cage, theAussie turned to officials and pleaded with them to bring the competition to a halt to allow the weather to pass.

“They all looked at me and nodded and all spoke to each other and then nodded and said, ‘All right, we’ll go in the tunnel’,” Samuels said.

“I think Ijustgave them a nudge in the right direction as to what everyone was thinking.”

Only seven of the 17 athletes in the group managed to score in the opening round, with eight of the 10 who fouled throwing the discus into the cage given the slippery conditions.

However Samuels was the last to throw in the group and by the time she stepped up to open her Olympic campaign, the drizzle had turned into a downpour and endured the worst of the conditions.

“I was looking to kind ofcompare with rain that I’ve thrown in in the past and it does get to a point where it is just too heavy,” Samuels said.

“In my head I thought this is just too heavy. Because by the time you wind up it just gets too wet. But I just had to go for it. I went through my normal routine that I do when it’s raining but the discus got wet and it went straight into thecageafter I lost my grip on it.

“It is what it is, but I did say to them after ‘This is insane, it’s tooheavy and we need to delay it’. I saw the men’s pole vault at the other end and that’s one event you don’t want to do in the rain. I just thought it was only a matter of time.”

The 2014 Commonwealth Games gold medallist, who will compete in the finals on Tuesday morning (Wednesday12.05am AEST), recovered after the 30-minutedelay to register a throw of 59.42 metres.

She was still in seventh position heading into the final round, however Samuelsnailed herfinal attempt (64.46 metres) to qualify second in group Abehind Croatian Sandra Perkovic (64.81 metres).

“It was definitely a test and it felt like the comp went for a long time,” Samuels said.

“I don’t know how long the delay was. I don’t know how long the delay was but thoughts do start creeping through your mind. You start thinking ‘hurry up, I want to get out there, this is not very great, is it going to be slippery when we go back out, is it going to be raining?’.

“All that doubt creeps in but you have to flick it aside and just go for it. It’s the Olympics. We’ve been training for this for a long time.”

Meanwhile Australian 400 metre hurdler Lauren Wells managed to qualify for the semi finals with a 56.26 second run in the heats on Monday night.

“My training and my racing coming into the Olympics would indicate that I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been,” Wells said.

“I’m sick of saying I’m ready for something big because I’m ready for it all the time but I’m patient and peaking at a major is a very difficult task.But I do think I’m in peak shape and ready to put something on the board that will reflect that tomorrow night.”

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