Jamaica's Shericka Jackson beat compatriot and Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah over 200m in Rome tonight ©Getty Images

Shericka Jackson of Jamaica and Kenya’s Nicholas Kimeli earned shock victories at tonight’s Golden Gala Pietro Mennea meeting in Rome, leaving Olympic champions in their wake in the women’s 200 metres and men’s 5,000m respectively.

Jackson beat compatriot Elaine Thompson-Herah, the double 100 and 200m Olympic champion, to win in a 2022 world-leading 21.91sec.

Kimeli, who finished fourth in the Tokyo 2020 5,000m final, ran away from Ethiopia’s Olympic 10,000m gold medallist Selemon Barega to win a coruscating duel with 21-year-old fellow Kenyan Jacob Krop which saw them move to seventh and ninth on the all-time list with respective times of 12min 46.33 and 12:46.79, with Eliud Kipchoge's 2004 meeting record of 12:46.53 being eclipsed.

Barega finished fourth in 12:54.87 behind fellow Ethiopian Yomif Kejelcha, who clocked 12:52.10, with Canada’s Tokyo 2020 silver medallist Mohammed Ahmed fifth in 12:55.84 and Ethiopia’s world champion Muktar Edris seventh in 12:58.63, with the first eight finishing inside 13 minutes.

While Jackson earned 200m silver at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, she was primarily a 400m runner until 2021, when she took 100m bronze at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and gold in the 4x100m relay.

This run underlines her serious ambitions for the summer’s World Athletics Championships Oregon22.

Thompson-Herah, running her first major 200m of the year, clocked 22.25, with Britain’s world 200m champion Dina Asher-Smith, whose Olympic season was undermined by a hamstring injury, third in a season’s best of 22.27.

Shaunae Miller-Uibo of The Bahamas, double Olympic 400m champion and the reigning Commonwealth 200m champion, was fourth in 22.48.

Allyson Felix, the multiple world and Olympic medallist at 200 and 400m who is in her farewell season at the age of 36, was seventh in 22.97.

Athing Mu of the United States answered the challenge of the Briton whom she beat to Olympic 800m gold last summer, Keely Hodgkinson, as she romped home to win in 1min 57.01sec, the fastest time recorded this year.

That dropped the time of 1:57.72 clocked by her 20-year-old rival Hodgkinson in winning at the Eugene Diamond League meeting - from which Mu, who turned 20 yesterday, had to scratch after recovering from COVID-19 - down to second on the 2022 list.

Mu’s compatriot Sandi Morris underlined her position as the women’s pole vaulter of the moment as she extended her unbeaten run with a clearance of 4.70 metres and then bettered her own season-leading effort of 4.73m on two occasions, going over at 4.75 and 4.81m.

Morris, who earlier this year retained her world indoor title, is set on going one better than her world outdoor silver in 2019, and tonight marked another stage in the ambition she spoke of before winning at the Rabat Diamond League, namely returning to 5.00m territory, a mark she achieved in 2016.

Britain’s Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist Holly Bradshaw equalled her season’s best of 4.60m to take second place on countback ahead of, in order, home vaulter Roberta Bruni, Olympic champion Katie Nageotte of the United States and Slovenia’s Tina Sutej.

At 22, Kristjan Ceh of Slovenia is starting to do to men’s discus fields what Yulimar Rojas habitually does to women’s triple jump fields.

All but one of the bespectacled Slovenian’s efforts would have been enough to win a contest against the very highest class of opposition, and they grew inexorably longer round by round, until, in the sixth, he cleared 70 metres for the second time in his career, reaching 70.72m.

That was a meeting record and just 55cm shy of his effort in at last month’s Birmingham Diamond League that put him tenth on the all-time list.

Fifth at the Tokyo 2020 Games, Ceh headed Austria’s Olympic bronze medallist Lukas Weisshaidinger, who threw 68.30m, Sweden’s world and Olympic champion Daniel Stahl, who had a best of 65.87m, with his compatriot Simon Pettersson, the Tokyo 2020 silver medallist, seventh on 63.73m.

Local hero Gianmarco Tamberi, the joint Olympic high jump champion, provided his customary razzmatazz but had to settle for third place with a clearance of just 2.24m, as JuVaughn Harrison of the United States won on countback from Poland’s Norbert Kobielski after both had been successful at 2.27m.

Germany’s world and Olympic women’s long jump champion Malaika Mihambo took a first-round lead of 6.79m that looked likely to earn victory until the fifth round, when the Ukrainian she beat to gold at the Doha 2019 World Championships, Maryna Bekh-Romanchuk, demonstrated once again her competitive qualities as she produced the winning leap of 6.85m.

Puerto Rico’s Olympic 100m hurdles champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn maintained her winning momentum in a meeting record of 12.34sec.

Fred Kerley of the United States, the Tokyo 2020 100m silver medallist, won with a time of 9.92sec, equalling his season’s best.

Ethiopia’s Tokyo 2020 silver medallist Lamecha Girma maintained his consistently impressive form as he bettered 8min for the third time this season, finishing more than seven seconds clear of Kenya’s Abraham Kibiwot to win in 7min 59.23sec.

Girma, beaten in a thrilling race against Morocco’s Olympic champion Soufiane El Bakkali at last Sunday’s Rabat Diamond League, is second behind his rival this season with the 7:58.68 he recorded in Ostrava on May 31.

Meanwhile Rio 2016 champion Conseslus Kipruto, who missed the Tokyo 2020 Games and faced charges in a Kenyan court last November of having sex with a 15-year-old girl, maintained his return to the top level by finishing fourth in a season’s best of 8:08.76, almost four seconds faster than he had run in Rabat.

World men’s shot put champion Joe Kovacs of the United States made his status tell with victory on 21.85m as Croatia’s Filip Mihaljevic and Konrad Bukowiecki of Poland both threw 21.18m.

In the women’s 400m hurdles Femke Bol of The Netherlands, the Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist, won in a season’s best of 53.02sec, an advance on the 53.94 she had clocked at a blustery Hengelo on Monday in her first race of the season at her specialist distance.

Grenada’s London 2012 champion and Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist Kirani James won the men’s 400m in 44.54sec.

Hirut Meshesha of Ethiopia, winner of Sunday night’s women’s 1500m at the Rabat Diamond League, repeated the trick in Rome, coming home in 4min 03.79sec from compatriot Axumawit Embaye, who clocked 4:04.53, with Britain’s Olympic silver medallist Laura Muir third in 4:04.93.