Game of Thrones just the relaxation Eilidh Doyle needed

Great Britain team skipper Eilidh Doyle killed the hours before her first proper taste of these World Championships by resting up and binge watching Game of Thrones and '¨Poldark.

Britain's Eilidh Doyle, left, and South Africa's Wenda Nel both qualified from the heats of the women's 400m hurdles Picture: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP/Getty Images

She seemed suitably relaxed as she eased through her heat and safely into the semi-finals of the women’s 400m hurdles.

The 30-year-old from Perth has had her captaincy duties and also a medal ceremony on opening night, when she and her GB 4x400m relay team-mates were upgraded from bronze to silver from Moscow two years ago.

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However, the Scot was delighted to get out and taste the atmosphere of the London Stadium as she cruised through, easing off down the straight and finishing third in the fourth of five heats in a time of 55.49. With the top four going through automatically it was just a case of negotiating the barriers safely and getting into a good rhythm ahead of the serious business in tonight’s semi-finals.

“It’s been nerve-wracking waiting to get out there – I just wanted to get the first round out of the way and get that secure qualification,” she said. “The first run is always nervy. You don’t want to make any mistakes, thankfully I didn’t and I’ll be back tomorrow.

“I spent the last few days just watching everybody and it’s made me hungry to get out and have my own shot.”

Doyle has stated that making the final and then doing the best she can to get in the mix if she does is her aim at these championships.

That seems sensible given the heat of competition that awaits further ahead in the event. Threats could be seen throughout the rest of the heats, with Olympic champion Dalilah Muhammad leading the way with a dominant win in the first heat, clocking 54.59.

Muhammad famously led a historic sub-53 second 1-2-3 at the US trials and it was another American, Kori Carter, who won Doyle’s heat well, with Wenda Nel of South Africa pipping the Scot on the line.

Carter said: “As an American hurdler, you have no other option but to be on your A game all the time. We have so much depth in this event but that is a blessing because it pushed me to be a better 
athlete.

“I want the gold, that’s all I’m going to say. That’s what I’ve been targeting for a long time.”

The third of that rapid star-spangled trio Shamier Little also went through but finished poorly, clipping the third last hurdle and losing it completely down the last straight, almost coming to a halt at the final barrier and having to standing jump it before 
stumbling home in 56.18.

Double world champion Zuzana Hejnova of the Czech Republic, Sara Slott Petersen of Denmark and Ristananna Tracey of Jamaica all sailed through with ease.

Hejnova said: “I took it out easy tonight. I checked my position on the big screen at 300m just to see where I was. But I will need to run faster tomorrow.

“My goal is to win a medal but that will be very tough. The Americans have come very prepared. Obviously I want the gold though.”

Britain’s Meghan Beasley joins Doyle in the semi-finals as a fastest loser.