fails in marathon bid
Channaka de Silva reporting from Helsinki, Finland
Sri Lanka’s challenge at the 10th World Athletics Championships
ended here in a blank as expected as the last remaining competitor
Anuradha Indrajith Cooray failed to finish in the men’s marathon
last evening here at the Olympic Stadium in Helsinki.
gave up through injury 23 kilometres into the race following the
failures of his two other teammates at the championships, high jumper
Manjula Kumara Wijesekara and 400-metre runner Prasanna Sampath
Amarasekara who had earlier been eliminated in the first round of
their respective events.
who has a personal best of 2:16.38 he posted in winning the South
Asian title last year, said before the race he aimed to post a time
below 2:14.00 and he started off well yesterday remaining in the
first bunch of runners till he gave up the raceAfter five kilometers,
he was 30th in a time of 15:22, after 10 kilometres he improved
to 17th in a time of 30:23-mere 0.01 off the pace of the leader.
Then at 15 kilometres, he was lying in 37th place with a time of
45:44 still just 0.11 minutes behind the leader. By the 20th kilometre
mark he was beginning to drop and was lying at 38th in a time of
1:01.59, a full minute separating him from the leader.
world champion and championship record holder Gharib Jaouad of Morocco
retained his title with an impressive lead, winning in a time of
2:10.10 while Isegwe Christopher of Tanzania claimed the silver
in 2:10.21. Ogata Tsuyoshi of Japan won the bronze in a time of
one of the favourites for the title, Olympic champion Stefano Baldini
of Italy also did not finish the race through injury. Meanwhile,
Indian Discus Thrower Neelam Jaswant Singh yesterday became the
first athletes to test positive for a banned drug at the championships
and has been provisionally suspended by the IAAF. The 34-year old
who won the women’s discus title at the Asian Games in Busan,
Korea had tested positive for the prohibited substance, pemoline,
the IAAF said in a release yesterday. The test had been conducted
in-competition in Helsinki on last Sunday.
700 of the 850 targeted tests for the championships had already
been carried out, and this was the first positive case, the IAAF
said. In a major anti doping drive, the IAAF testing almost every
one of two athletes here.
Ladji Doucoure of France stunned everyone in the men’s 110
metres hurdles final which was expected to be a contest between
China’s Olympic champion and joint-world record holder Xiang
Liu and four-time world champion Allen Johnson of the United States.
22-year-old Frenchman clocked 13.07 for his victory, with Liu finishing
second at 13.08 and Johnson third at 13.10. Johnson hit seventh
and eighth hurdles but managed to stay abreast with the other two
runners and it was a very close finish with all three first men
hitting the finish together.
of America’s impressive young brigade at these championships,19-year
old Allyson Felix won the women’s 200 metres in a time of
22.16. Her teammate Rachelle Smith produced a brilliant dash in
the final 50 metres to emerge from the fourth to second for the
silver over France’s Christine Arron who collected her second
bronze at the championships. Both Arron and Smith clocked an identical
22.31, but Smith won on photo finish evidence.