Late-blooming Sinead Diver has set her sights on contesting the 10,000m at next year’s world championships in Doha after winning the Australian title in Melbourne.
Diver, 41, smashed her personal best with a time of 31 minutes 50.98 seconds at the Zatopek:10 meet at Lakeside Stadium, less than a second outside the automatic qualifying time for the world titles.
She finished second behind world-class Japanese runner Hitomi Niiya (31:32.50).
Diver is best known as a marathon runner, having set the fastest time by an Australian on home soil at the Melbourne Marathon in October.
But with brutally hot conditions expected for the world championships in Qatar, the prospect of stepping down in distance to the 10,000m holds major appeal.
“I thought if I was near the standard I wouldn’t mind doing it because it’s going to be so hot in Doha – I don’t really fancy doing a marathon there,” said the Irish-born Diver.
“It would be great to do this.
“I’ve never done a track race at a major championships so that would be so brilliant.
“We were expecting really bad conditions tonight.
“It was supposed to be thunderstorms and rain so we got really lucky.
“It was pretty good out there.”