Farah beaten, Bolt disqualified on night of surprises in Daegu

Report from a very shocking evening session on day two of the IAAF World Championships in Daegu

Mo Farah (Mark Shearman)

In much the same way that ‘Magic Monday’ became a legacy of the Sydney Olympics, this day could go down in athletics history as ‘Surprise Sunday’ after Usain Bolt was disqualified from the men’s 100m final and Mo Farah was out-kicked in the 10,000m at the World Championships in Daegu.

It was the ultimate frustration for Bolt, whose form all year had been under question, but after dominant runs in the heats and semi-finals, he genuinely looked ready to regain his air of invincibility in the final.

But then the unthinkable happened. He reacted too soon – a mistake he knew he had made straight away. There was no denying that Bolt was the culprit. Shaking his head in anger, Bolt reluctantly walked off the track and the race got away at the second time of asking.

Instead it was his training partner, Yohan Blake, who ran away with gold. Running into a -1.4m/s headwind, Blake was the only athlete to break 10 seconds as he clocked 9.92 – worth 9.74 with a perfect tailwind.

Walter Dix came through for silver in 10.08, while 2003 champion Kim Collins took bronze in 10.09, becoming the oldest ever World 100m finalist and medallist. Christophe Lemaitre was a metre behind in fourth (10.19).

But regardless of Blake’s achievement – and unfortunately for him – the night will always be remembered more for the non-participation of Bolt. And Tyson Gay and Asafa Powell for that matter, who are both out with injury.

Bolt was not the only athlete to be disqualified for false starting, and the British misfortune continued in the 100m semi-finals held earlier this evening. World indoor champion Dwain Chambers was shown the red card after jumping the gun in his race.

It was then down to Marlon Devonish and Harry Aikines-Aryeetey to carry British hopes, but Devonish finished seventh in his semi (10.25) and Aikines-Aryeetey was third in his (10.23). The other big casualties of the semi finals were 9.85 man Richard Thompson and 9.88 runner Michael Frater.

At the opposite end of the distance spectrum, the men’s 10,000m threw up another surprise. Mo Farah had beaten all of the world’s best on the circuit this year and he rightly headed into the 25-lap race as favourite.

The race also featured the return of defending champion Kenenisa Bekele, who has been out with injury for the best part of two years. But the great Ethiopian dropped out halfway when the pace started to heat up.

The rest of the race went according to plan as far as Farah was concerned, and he employed his favoured tactic of sitting at the back of the lead pack before waiting to make his move. With two laps to go he began his long drive for home and kicked hard. But there was only one problem – everyone had forgetten about Ibrahim Jeylan.

The Ethiopian is a former world junior champion in the 10,000m and on the cross-country, but this year he has flown under the radar. He has only raced four times, all in Japan, and in his first 10,000m of the season he finished fifth.

But in Daegu he was in supreme form, and he tracked Farah on the last lap with a finish timed to perfection. The Brit led all the way until 20 metres before the finish, when Jeylan passed him and crossed the line to win gold in 27:13.81.

Farah – who clocked 27:14.07, the second-fastest ever time by a Briton – held on for silver, to become the first male British runner to win a World medal in the 10,000m. But despite his forced smile, his disappointment was clear.

But Bolt and Farah were not the only favourites to falter – in two of the other three finals of this evening session, the expected winners did not come through. Ashton Eaten was beaten by team-mate Trey Hardee in the decathlon, while Li Yanfeng of China defeated Nadine Muller in the discus.

Indeed, Brittney Reese was the only favourite to live up to expectation and the American successfully defended her world long jump title. The standard was poor as 6.82m was enough to win and 6.39m was the top-eight cut-off mark at half way. But it was competitive and just six centimetres separated Reese from the other medallists, Olga Kucherenko (6.77m) and Ineta Radevica (6.76m), winning Latvia’s first ever world medal.

In the decathlon, Hardee came back from a disappointing pole vault to throw a PB of 68.99m in the javelin – an event where Leonel Suarez was expected to do well in, but the Cuban was some eight metres down on his best. Eaton held his own in that event to give himself a fighting chance in the 1500m.

And fight he did, going out hard and crossing the line first with a PB of 4:18.94 to finish more than five seconds ahead of Suarez. In decathlon terms, just four points separated them at the end, 8505 to 8501.

But neither scored high enough to close the gap on Hardee, who retained his title with a score of 8607, the lowest winning mark in World Championships history.

Yanfeng led from the outset in the women’s discus, throwing 65.28m in round one before improving to 66.52m in round two – a mark that remained the best of the day. Also in that round, Muller threw 65.97m to take silver. Cuba’s Yarelis Barrios sent the disc out to 65.73m in the third round to take bronze.

Qualification summary

A round up of the rounds…

Progressed to next round

» Abubaker Kaki may review his tactics for the 800m final. In today’s semis he went off like a train, clocking 50.19 at half way. Acting as a pacemaker for the rest of the field, he was inevitably caught as 17-year-old Ethiopian Mohammed Aman won with a national senior record of 1:44.57. Marcin Lewandowski came through in second (1:44.60), but Kaki’s time of 1:44.62 was enough to progress as a fastest loser. World record-holder David Rudisha made it safely through and showed he can win a more tactical race, holding off a challenge from Adam Kszczot to record the fastest ever semi-final in World history, 1:44.20. USA’s Nick Symmonds won the other semi from Yuriy Borzakovskiy.

» All the big four made it through to the women’s 400m, but a new contender emerged. Allyson Felix won the first semi (50.36) and Amantle Montsho won the third (50.13) from world leader Anastaysiya Kapachinskaya (50.41). But the most surprising result was Francena McCorory winning the second semi in 50.24. Defending champion Sanya Richards-Ross was relegated to third (50.66), but squeaked through to the final as the slowest of the fastest losers.

Shock exits

» The only surprise non-finalist from the women’s 400m semi-finals was Jamaica’s Rosemarie Whyte, who had run sub-50 this year. But tonight her 50.90 was not enough for the final.

» Khadevis Robinson, who has this year won on the Diamond League circuit, missed out on making the 800m final, finishing fifth in the first and fastest semi.

And the Brits…

» Andrew Osagie ran well in his 800m semi final, but was ultimately outclassed by three more experienced rivals. He ran 1:46.12 to finish a very respectable fourth.

» British duo Nicola Sanders finished sixth in her 400m semi (52.47) and Lee McConnell finished seventh in hers (51.97), both some way off the required time to progress to the final.

8 Responses to “Farah beaten, Bolt disqualified on night of surprises in Daegu”

  1. Carmel says:

    Bolt was carrying on with his usual 'full of himself' nonsense, before the Final and although for the spectators it was a shame not to see him race, for him it is hoped that he learnt a lesson-as his show off egomaniac behaviour, all the time, makes him appear obnoxious-and now he might realise it is all about the race and not his shameful, boastful rubbish!!!

    • Kevin O'Neill says:

      I tend to agree. Remember, it is no-one's fault but their own. It just takes discipline – if you can train 6 hours a day, 7 days a week, surely you can not go until you hear the gun. In case anyone wonders, I am a former AAA coach, timekeeper and track & field judge with over 40 years in the sport (and 2-time London marathon runner).

  2. hrshaw12 says:

    i am very disappointed that Usain Bolt was disqualified. I think that the IAAF should at least allow one false start in the finals, so that fans who have paid so much to see these athletes of such high caliber, won't leave disappointed. The world event and olympic occurs so irregularly compared to the diamond league competition, that a liitle more flexibility should be offered in terms of the false start rule. Can you imagine looking at an NBA finals between the Lakers and Miami, and there is no Kobe, Wade, and Lebron?

  3. hrshaw12 says:

    IAAF should amend the one false start just for the finals. It is very disappointing to the fans, athletes, and the entire world watching by television to witness such catastrophy amidst a competition such as the worlds, and/or the Olympics. Already our sport, compared to basketball, and soccer, and foot-ball, is not as popular, since it produces few stars; however, having said that, the disappointment for the fans is similarly experienced in the hypothetical imagination of viewing an NBA finals, between Miami and Lakers, with no Kobe, Wade, or Lebron.
    Basically, the one false-start you are disqualified rule, is like saying "you fowl a player once, and you sit for the remainder of the basketball game. I feel that this 2011 worlds 100m finals was anticlimatic, and therefore, did not do the sport any justice, particularly since, Usain Bolt, who was arguably the main attention, was disqualified. I think that most people share the same feeling, and as a result, no longer interested in watching the championship any more. Viewer ratings have conceivably, and most definitely fallen. Change that one false start, you are disqualified rule and make the 100m finals more fun to watch again.

  4. Kevin O'Neill says:

    Time for Bolt to stop messing around and concentrate at the start Perhaps? There's nothing wrong with the false start rule; there are far fewer false starts than years gone by. It just takes discipline! Nevertheless, 'we was robbed' of seeing a superstar. Roll on the 200!

  5. Bobby J says:

    Bolt could have been a good loser (& he was a loser even if he did not run, 'he shot his bolt!'). He should have done a post race interview and congratulated Blake, his fellow countryman – but hey I'm not caught up in the heat of the event and I can't run to the nearest bus-stop. Hope he can smile about it before the 200m, but not at the start-line and light up athletics again. Championships are about winning medals, not trying to get a record/fast time (He could have game them 5 yd start) – I'm sure he will have learn't his lesson.

  6. Bobby J says:

    Mo did UK proud and himself proud. He ran the race he planned but got caught out by a faster runner no one had bargained for & what a run-down by Jeylan. Hope Mo recovers fast enough to put on a good show in the 5k. By the way the Decathlon was cracking too, looking forward now to seeing Jessica tomorrow (witnessed her exploits at UK Trails on the Saturday events and she was a class act all round). Nice to see Moorcroft (a fellow coventry lad) and Macey given 'air' on TV to voice their expertise and experiences.

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