Tokyo Paralympics: Kiwi Anna Grimaldi goes back-to-back with T47 long jump gold medal

Kiwi Anna Grimaldi has defended her Paralympics crown, winning the women's T47 long jump at Tokyo's Olympic Stadium.

Grimaldi, 24, cleared 5.74m with her opening effort in the final, immediately moving to the top of the leaderboard.

And despite no-jumps on her second and third efforts, Grimaldi went even better on her fourth, setting another new record with a leap of 5.76m to consolidate first place.

The gold-winning mark was 14cm greater than her winning performance at Rio de Janeiro five years ago, but down on the 5.91m she reached earlier this year.

Russian Aleksandra Moguchiaia provided Grimaldi's closest competition, but when she could only jump 5.67m with her final effort, the Kiwi, competing with a right arm deficiency, was guaranteed gold.

Ecuador's Kiara Rodriguez finished third with 5.63m.

"It feels like a whirlwind," she says. "There's been so much go into this campaign over the past five years and I owe a lot to a lot of people - I hope I did them proud out there, I did myself proud.

"It's been a huge five years and I just feel like the weight of the world has lifted off my shoulders. This is the most nervous I've been for a competition - I felt like I was going to throw up.

"The plan was to not foul my first jump and I'm stoked I didn't, because it let me relax a little bit. The last couple of weeks, the doubts crept in and the stress crept in, the confidence dwindled, but I was lucky to have people around me.

"I'm super proud - Rio, I won by accident, but this time, I did it on purpose. I've learned a lot and changed as a person, and I hope that was obvious to people out there."

Grimaldi's victory is New Zealand's fifth gold medal at the Tokyo Paralympics so far, along with three silver and three bronze for a total of 11 medals.

After qualifying fastest for his KL2 kayak final, Kiwi paddler Scott Martlew narrowly missed the podium, finishing fourth in a blanket finish for the silver medal. Aussie Curtis McGrath was more than a second clear in victory.

Later Friday, F46 javelin thrower Holly Robinson will seek to improve on her silver medal at Rio 2016.

Friday, September 3 (NZ times)


Noon Women's 50m butterfly heats - Nikita Howarth (S7), 5th 38.46s (progresses to final)

9:04pm Women's 50m butterfly final - Nikita Howarth (S7)


Women's road race - Sarah Ellington (C2), 12th 1h 21m 23s


Women's long jump final - Anna Grimaldi (T47), 1st 5.76m (Paralympic record, gold medal)

10:28pm Women's javelin final - Holly Robinson (F46)


Men's semi-finals - Corbin Hart (KL3), 5th 42.290s (progresses to B final)

Men's B final - Corbin Hart (KL3), 5th 44.182s

Men's final - Scott Martlew (KL2), 4th 42.880s