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Estonian Erki Nool Wins Decathlon

August 20, 1998

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) _ Erki Nool gave Estonia its first European Championships gold medal since 1938, rallying to win the decathlon today.

Nool’s javelin throw of 231 feet, 9 inches, secured the victory.

Nool, who was sixth after six events, cleared 17-8 1/2 in the pole vault, then had the big javelin throw to take the lead for good. He finished with 8,667 points.

Eduard Hamalainen of Finland, who had led in the middle stages of the competition, took the silver with 8,592. Lev Lobodin of Russia got the bronze with 8,571 points.

The last gold medal Estonia had won was in 1938, by Aleksander Kreek in the shot put.

Reyes Estevez of Spain pulled away with 200 meters remaining to win the men’s 1,500-meter in 3 minutes, 41.31 seconds.

Rui Silva of Portugal, the leader entering the final lap, held off Fermin Cacho of Spain to finish second in 3:41.84. Cacho, the Olympic champion in 1992 and the 1994 European champion, was third in 3:42.13.

Pavel Januszewski of Poland surged ahead over the last hurdle to beat favorite Ruslan Mashchenko of Russia in the men’s 400-meter hurdles.

Mashchenko, who has the fastest time in Europe this year, lost his stride as Januszewski burst ahead to win in a national record 48.17 seconds. Mashchenko was second in 48.25 .

Yelena Afanasyeva of Russia won the women’s 800 in 1:58.50.

Annarita Sidoti regained her European championship and led a 1-2 Italian finish in the women’s 10-kilometer walk in 42:49.

Vita Pavlish of Ukraine won the women’s shot put with a heave of 71-2, a championship record and the best in the world this year.

In the men’s 400, the three British sprinters who are tops in Europe this year all advanced to Friday’s final: Mark Richardson, Iwan Thomas and Solomon Wariso. Thomas led the eight qualifiers with a time of 44.82.

Grit Breuer of Germany, the 1990 champion who has served a three-year doping ban, led the women’s 400 qualifiers in 50.79.

Olga Vasdeki of Greece upset world champion Sarka Kasparkova of the Czech Republic to win the women’s triple jump. Vasdeki soared 47-9, Kasparkova was second at 47-8.

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