American freak’s controversial win

American Christian Coleman has scorched the men's 100m field to claim gold, but did so in front of an almost empty stadium.

Coleman, silver medallist to Gatlin two years ago in London, rocketed to the top of the podium in a season's best time of 9.76 seconds. The sixth fastest time in the history of the event.

"At the end, all my worries just evaporated out there," said Coleman, 23.

"It was a crazy feeling. To add my name to the list of the legendary guys who've come before me is an honour and a blessing."

His 37-year-old compatriot Justin Gatlin continued to prove he is one of the sport's big-time performers and grabbed the silver in 9.89.

Canadian Andre De Grasse, a triple medal winner at the Rio Olympics, returned to form after a string of injuries and took bronze in 9.90.

Just weeks ago Coleman had looked in danger of missing the world championships when the US Anti-Doping Agency filed - and later withdrew - a whereabouts violation charge that could have resulted in a one or two-year sanction.

His press conference after the race was delayed as he was pulled aside to undergo a doping test.

"World champion, it sounds incredible, too good to be true. For me to make it here and come out with a gold is incredible," Coleman told the BBC.

"I was just out of college two years ago and not many people expected me to win a silver. I expected to come out here and be great and upgrade my silver medal."

Athletics legend Michael Johnson slammed Coleman, but the new fastest man on earth hit back with a ruthless shot.

"Michael Johnson doesn't pay my bills. I don't care what he has to say," he said.

Coleman made it look easy in the final.
Coleman made it look easy in the final.

The US Anti-Doping Agency has never reported a positive drug test for Coleman. The agency said Coleman has been tested on 20 separate occasions in 2018 and 2019. He missed a drug test on April 26, his third missed test since June 2018.

But the World Anti-Doping Agency's interpretation of the rule backdated his first failure to April 1, 2018, instead of the date it occurred, June 6, 2018. On Sept. 2, USADA said that technicality meant there weren't three failures within 12 months, and it would not pursue the case.

In contrast to the boos that greeted Gatlin's victory in London two years ago - a reference to his two previous suspensions for doping - the reception for Coleman was warm at the lightly attended event in the Qatari capital.

 

 

FANS ERUPT OVER DOHA CONDITIONS

The International Association of Athletics Federations has come under heavy fire after athletes were forced to suffer through insane temperatures during the World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar.

World champion decathlete Kevin Mayer believes hosting the world championships in Doha is a "disaster" with soaring temperatures and poor crowds blighting the event.

Stream over 50 sports Live & On-Demand with KAYO SPORTS on your TV, computer, mobile or tablet. Just $25/month, no lock-in contract. Get your 14-day free trial and start streaming instantly >

A crowd of 13,288 - although 1,484 were guests - watched the opening session on Friday night while it appeared only slightly more were in the stadium on Saturday evening.

It came after 28 runners dropped out of the women's marathon, which started at midnight in an attempt to overcome the insane temperatures.

Athletes were doing everything to overcome the heat.
Athletes were doing everything to overcome the heat.

It has brought an angry response from French world-record holder Mayer who criticised the decision to hold the championships in Qatar.

"We can all see it's a disaster, there is no-one in the stands, and the heat has not been adapted at all," Mayer told French daily sport newspaper L'Equipe.

"There have already been nearly 30 withdrawals in the women's marathon. It's sad.

"We have to leave reason aside and more concentrate on the passion, because if not I would have boycotted these Championships.

"We haven't really prioritised athletes when organising the Championships here. It makes it difficult."

The reaction on social media was just as severe with many left slamming the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) for their decision to host the event in Doha.

France's 50km walk champion Yohann Diniz hit out at organisers for forcing walkers to race in the heat while track and field athletes are competing in a comfortable 25 degrees Celsius in the climate-controlled Khalifa Stadium.

"I am disgusted by the conditions," the Frenchman said.

"I am extremely upset. If we were in the stadium we would have normal conditions, between 24-25 degrees, but outside they have placed us in a furnace, which is just not possible."

A runner from Turkey is taken off on a gurney during the Women's Marathon.
A runner from Turkey is taken off on a gurney during the Women's Marathon.


Bypass workcomes to a halt for Christmas

premium_icon Bypass workcomes to a halt for Christmas

THE bypass was due to be finished by Christmas, but work was delayed for a few...

Learn about every plant on the Northern Rivers

premium_icon Learn about every plant on the Northern Rivers

A BOOK being sold through the Lismore Botanic Gardens has been described as a...

Why this woman is visiting beaches in 230 countries

premium_icon Why this woman is visiting beaches in 230 countries

A BYRON BAY woman will run more than 16km of beaches across 230 countries to...