European Indoors: Great Britain quartet make it through qualifying rounds
Last Updated: March 3, 2013 11:21am
All four British athletes in action on Saturday morning at the European Indoor Championships in Gothenburg safely made it through the qualifying rounds.
Asha Philip, the former world youth champion whose senior career has been blighted by injury problems, eased into the semi-finals of the women's 60 metres.
Men's pole vaulter Steve Lewis and Lauren Howarth, making her senior British debut in the 3,000m, also progressed in their respective events, while Chris Tomlinson qualified for the men's long jump final.
Philip was the first British woman ever to win a global 100m title aged 16 in 2007, but her career was side-tracked when she suffered a serious knee injury competing in a trampoline world championships later that year.
The 22-year-old clocked 7.19 seconds to finish second behind Ezinne Okparaebo of Norway and qualify eighth fastest overall following three very quick heats. Ireland's Amy Foster made it through as a fastest loser.
"It's my fastest opener, so to come out with that from lane eight, I'm really happy," Philip said.
"When I saw the times from the first heat I thought, 'Oh my god, it's making it hard for me', but it's good that they are pushing me along. I feel so good and there is definitely more to come."
Lewis cleared a season's best 5.70m at the first attempt to reach the pole vault final, which although five centimetres down on the automatic qualifying mark was good enough to make the final.
Howarth produced a well-paced run to cruise into the final of the 3,000m, coming home second to Portugal's Sara Moreira in 9:03.30 with the top four qualifying. Ireland's two-time European cross country champion Fionnuala Britton also advanced in third place.
Tomlinson left it until his final leap but still managed to make the long jump final with a season's best 7.98m.