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Diamond podiums for Kennedy and Aussie athletics stars

World champion Nina Kennedy has vaulted back into Diamond League competition in impressive fashion, leading the way as four leading Olympic-bound Australian athletes all made the podium in Doha.

The 27-year-old Western Australian Kennedy, perhaps the nation's top hope for track and field gold at the Paris Games, finished second in her first international competition of the year, beaten only on countback by Britain's world indoor champion Molly Caudery on Friday.

But there were also top-three finishes for miler Jess Hull, discus hope Matthew Denny and high jump star Eleanor Patterson in the Qatari capital at the third Diamond League meeting of the season.

Hull beaten
Ethiopia's Freweyni Hailu finishing ahead of Jess Hull in the Doha 1500m. (AP PHOTO)

Both Kennedy and Caudery soared over 4.73 metres on their first attempts at the height to forge clear of the rest of the field, but it was an early failure at 4.53m from Kennedy that prevented her eventually sharing the spoils with her UK friend and rival as they both failed to clear 4.83m.

In difficult blustery conditions, though, Kennedy was happy with her form, reckoning she's a different athlete these days after winning both the world title in Budapest last year as well as the Diamond League crown in Zurich.

"I think my mindset has changed since winning the world title," she said. "This is my first competition back with the best girls in the world.

"I'm a little bit rusty but if anything has changed, it's just that I have higher expectations of myself now."

Hull enjoyed a physical battle in the 1500m, producing a stirring finish to clock 4min 00.84sec and finish runner-up behind Ethiopia's Freweyni Hailu (4:00.42).

"It was so physical out there! About 150 metres in, I was reminded that this isn't quite like racing in Australia. I think we slowed down a lot in the middle and when it bunches like that it gets pretty rough with everyone trying to fight for the same position," Hull said.

"With 500m to go I had quite a tussle with (Diribe) Welteji but I was able to use my experience to regain composure. It would've been pretty easy at that point to get frustrated but I was able to find some space and get back into my own running."

Denny delivered the second best throw of his career with his first-round 69.02m effort that earned him the runner's up spot behind Slovenian world champ Kristjan Ceh (70.48m in the fourth round).

Patterson, the 2022 world high jump champion, cleared 1.91m at her final attempt, beaten on countback by Ukrainian Irina Gerashchenko and bettered only by Serbian Angelina Topic's 1.94m.

International performance of the night was American sprint ace Kenneth Bednarek's world-leading 200m run, the Tokyo Olympic silver medallist storming to victory in 19.67sec.

"I knew I was ready to run a world lead, I was just hoping that the wind would work with us," Bednarek said. "Running fast this early in the season is a good sign. But times don't matter - my main goal this year is to win the Olympic title."

Brazil's Alison dos Santos won the 400 hurdles in 46.86.

India's world and Olympic javelin champion, Neeraj Chopra (88.36m), finished second behind Jakub Vadlejch of the Czech Republic (88.38).