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  • Serbian gold medalist Ivana Spanovic reacts during the medal ceremony for the women's long jump at the 2018 World Indoor Athletics Championships in Birmingham (ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)
Serbian athlete beat arch-rival Brittney Reese to clinch the long jump world indoor title in Birmingham with the season's best achievement 6,96 m. Already European indoor and outdoor champion, Ivana is now crowned with her first world title in career...
Branko Cvetojevic

5 Mar 2018 - 2:52 PM  UPDATED 5 Mar 2018 - 3:00 PM

Ivana Spanovic is champion of the World!

The Serbian athlete won the long jump gold medal at the 2018 World Indoor Championship in Birmingham with season's best result 6,96 m. Ivana finally beat her arch-rival Brittney Reese from the US, by achieving winning jump in fourth series of the competition finals.

The 27-year-old won bronze and silver in the past two indoor championships and a bronze at last years Outdoor World Championship in London, but this time was more successful and added world title to a gold medal from the 2017 European Indoor Championship.

"It feels so good", Spanovic said after medal ceremony in Birmingham.

"I have tried to win this title so many times and after many jumps and other medals, I finally managed to produce gold. I'm so happy," she said.

Spanovic was on the mark from the very beginning. Her confidence, based on the fact that she is the world's leading long jumper this year, was boosted with the first round 6,89 m leap. American champion Reese get in front only shortly, after she jumped to the same distance as Serbian, but just minutes later was hit back by Spanovic's winning jump in the fourth series.

After the medal ceremony that saw her wiping tears when Serbian national anthem was played, Ivana praised former champion and silver medalist Brittney Reese.

"She is a special athlete. We had the same goal and it was a tough battle. But I am happy she is here. She is pushing me forward and I like competing against her. Without her I would probably never reach all this achievements. I am blessed to have her for rival", Ivana said.

Spanovic brought first gold medal at the world championships in the history of Serbian athletics and led the national team to the high 9th position at the 2018 World Indoor Championship medal list.