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World, Olympic women’s hurdles champs set for Boston duel

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Boston Indoor Grand Prix
athletics

Reigning world outdoor 100m hurdles champion Nia Ali and reigning Olympic 100m hurdles champion Brianna McNeal will meet in a 60m hurdles showdown at the Boston Indoor Grand Prix, organizers announced Thursday.

The January 25 meet is the opener of the seven-event World Athletics Indoor Tour, which also includes stops in Germany, Poland, Britain, France and Spain over January and February.

The US hurdles stars could be getting an early rehearsal for a matchup at the Tokyo Olympics as well as the World Indoors in March at Nanjing, China.

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Ali completed a second maternity leave comeback last year by capturing the world title at Doha in a personal best of 12.34 seconds while McNeal was disqualified for a false start in qualifying.

McNeal won the 2013 world 100 hurdles crown at Moscow and took silver at the 2016 World Indoors behind Ali before edging runner-up Ali for gold later that year at the Rio Olympics.

Reigning world 800m champion Donavan Brazier will compete in the 600m at Boston. The 22-year-old American won the Diamond League 800 crown last year and captured the world title in an American record 1:42.34.

New Zealand’s Nick Willis, a two-time 1,500m Olympic medalist who turns 37 in April, will seek his seventh victory in the Boston mile against Clayton Murphy, who became the first American in 24 years to win an Olympic 800m medal when he took bronze at Rio in 2016.

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