Belfast Telegraph

Blow for Britain's relay medal hopes as injured Gemili forced to pull out

By Robert Jones

Adam Gemili has been forced to pull out of the Great Britain team for the World Championships in Beijing on medical advice.

The 21-year-old was due to compete in the 4x100 metres relay, having not raced since suffering a hamstring tear after running 9.97 seconds at the Birmingham Grand Prix in early June.

Gemili has been training at the team’s holding camp in Fukuoka, Japan, but it has now been decided that competing in China would be too great a gamble.

British Athletics performance director Neil Black said: “While Adam has suffered no adverse effects from training following his previous injury, competing is too big a risk based on the latest medical feedback.

“He has made amazing progress and it is a reflection on him that he so wanted to fulfil his commitment to the relay programme. However we have to make difficult calls occasionally and this is the best for him with the Rio Olympics and the London 2017 World Championships on the horizon.

“We’ve got a superb relay squad, and the athletes work so hard together, I can understand him wanting to give every last effort to try and make the team.”

Gemili, the European 200m champion, said: “I’m disappointed that I can’t be part of the team, but I do understand the decision. It will be very hard to watch from the sidelines in Beijing, but I will do anything I can to support the rest of the guys.”

The loss of Gemili’s talent and his ability to shine on the big stage is a blow to Britain’s relay hopes, with the team aiming to come home with a medal.

Meanwhile, athletics’ governing body has denied blocking publication of a study which reportedly says a third of top athletes admitted violating anti-doping rules.

The Sunday Times said the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) suppressed the survey, conducted at the 2011 Daegu World Championships.

But the IAAF said it had “never vetoed publication of this article.”

A German TV documentary claims four leading Russian athletes could face bans. Responding to the story, the IAAF said that “this is not a new story”, adding that the claims were initially made on German TV in 2013.

Belfast Telegraph


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