Madison de Rozario, Vanessa Low add to Australia’s gold medal haul in Dubai


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Clarke, making her Australian team debut, secured her first international medal in a personal best time of 12.94.

De Rozario, who collected the 1500m silver on Monday night, was not to be denied a night later after a pep talk from her coach, Australian para great Louise Sauvage.

“The 800 is a tricky one as you don’t have a lot of time and you sometimes second-guess your decisions… I saw a gap which was a little earlier in the kick than I would normally do… but I committed and finished strong,” de Rozario said.

She took the lead at the bell and held off Switzerland’s took Catherine Debrunner and China’s Zhou Hongzhuan to win in one minute 52.15 seconds.

Low’s previous world and Paralympic medals were under the German flag – making this gold her first since receiving her Australian citizenship in July 2017.

“Bringing home the gold for my new country was really amazing,” she said.

German-born athlete Vanessa Low added to another golden night for Australia at the world para athletics championships.

German-born athlete Vanessa Low added to another golden night for Australia at the world para athletics championships. Credit:Karleen Minney

Low’s fifth jump of 4.68 metres was the decisive effort – short of her world record for double leg amputees of 5.05m but still 27cm further than silver medallist Gitta Haenen from Belgium.

“It truly is very special competing for Australia finally,” the German-born Low said. “Australia is the most amazing country with very kind people and of course my amazing husband.

“When I left the team hotel today to head to my competition I was speaking to him and telling him I was going to fight for a medal for ‘our’ country.”

Scott Reardon, a leg amputee himself who won 100m gold at the Rio Paralympics, is the reason Low took up Australian citizenship in July 2017. The couple married in October last year.

But Reardon is overcoming an injury and had to miss competing in Dubai. However, he lit up social media on Tuesday night as the 29-year-old Low went through the six-round long jump competition.

Low was 15 when she slipped off a crowded train platform and into the path of a train heading into the station.

The impact severed her left leg. She was in a coma in hospital for two months, during which time they had to amputate her right leg. It took Low two years to learn to walk with two prosthetic legs.

But once she got the hang of it, the sporting world opened up for her.

Low represented Germany at the 2011 worlds in Christchurch, 2013 in Lyon, and 2015 in Doha in long jump and the 100m.

She is also a four-time medallist at the European championships and won a gold and silver at the Rio Paralympics for both events.

But that was her last major competition in the black, red and gold German colours.

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