Marlon Devonish failed to deliver the pyrotechnics he had been promising but proclaimed himself happy with a weekend's work that has guaranteed his place at next month's World Championships.
The Olympic relay gold-medallist finished second in the 200 metres final yesterday evening, behind friend and rival Christian Malcolm. A season?s best time of 20.66 seconds booked Devonish?s seat on the flight to Helsinki in four weeks? time.
While he would have preferred to have beaten Malcolm and claim the fourth AAA title of his career, his main objective was to erase the memory of Saturday?s aberration in the 100m when he was disqualified for a false start.
The previous day?s events clearly played on his mind in the 200m final as he dwelled in his blocks for a split second before chasing down three of the four athletes outside him.
Unfortunately for the Coventry Godiva runner, Malcolm remained a tantalising distance ahead and although he moved to within inches on the line, a photograph showed that he had timed his run just too late.
Nevertheless Devonish was not downhearted.
?I have got to be pleased,? he said. ?I am just happy to start the race. At the beginning I was hyper-paranoid about false starting so I didn?t get away as well as I had in the semi.?
As things stand, Devonish could also get the chance to run both sprint distances in Helsinki as one of only three British athletes who have attained the qualifying standard of 10.21secs in the 100m.
Although that might change if Malcolm or another runner goes even faster, Devonish felt he had done his job.
?I have always wanted to double up and now I can do it,? he said.
Heptathlete Kelly Sotherton, meanwhile, found succour from the unlikely source of the shot putt, one of her weaker events, after a frustrating weekend in which she struggled to find her best.
The Birchfield Harrier laboured with her high jump, 100m hurdles and long jump but produced a personal best in the shot with a distance of
?The first few events were awful,? Sotherton said. ?Then the PB came in the one I did not expect because I have not been throwing well in the last few weeks and have been finding it difficult to get to 13m. To get near to 14m is very encouraging.?
Birchfield?s star of the championships was hammer thrower Zoe Derham, whose lifetime best of 64.02m earned her second place to British No 1 Shirley Webb.
In doing so Derham made a strong claim for a place in next year?s Commonwealth Games although she is taking nothing for granted. She knows only too well the risk posed by funding cuts and the vagaries of team selection.
?I knew I was throwing well but it was just a question of doing it on the day. To get a PB is fantastic,? said Derham.
?Before this season I had not thrown a PB since 2002 and had a couple of dud years which have been a struggle.?
In response to her travails, Derham has returned to student life at Gloucestershire University and that has given her more time to prepare.
?I have worked a lot harder with my coach Lorraine Shaw and am not so tired as a result of giving up full-time work,? she added.
However, Birchfield club-mate Tom Parsons did not enjoy his day as much, coming a poor fifth in the high jump with a height of 2.17m.
Before the championships, the Hall Green jumper had been ranked No 2 in Britain, having cleared 2.23 and claimed that he would be unhappy with anything less in Manchester.
The competition was won by five-time AAA champion Ben Challenger, who qualified for Helsinki with a season?s best of 2.27.