BIRMINGHAM, England (Reuters) - American Jeneba Tarmoh defeated compatriot and Olympic champion Allyson Felix by the narrowest of margins on Sunday after both athletes clocked the same time over 200metres at the Birmingham Diamond League meeting.
Tarmoh, a member of the Olympic gold medal winning 4x100 meters relay team at the 2012 London Olympics, was eventually awarded first place ahead of Felix and both given times of 22.29 seconds. British teenager Dina Asher-Smith finished third in a personal best one-hundredth of a second behind.
“I was shocked to beat Allyson,” said Tarmoh. “Now I’m definitely confident I’ll get a spot on the U.S. team for the world championships, as long as I get on the podium in Beijing that would be a blessing.” Former American footballer American Marvin Bracy won the men’s 100 meters in 9.93 seconds followed by Britain’s European 200 champion Adam Gemili who broke 10 seconds for the first time when he hurled himself at the line to finish in 9.97. Gemili fell heavily to the track immediately afterwards, clutching his right leg, and was stretchered off the track.
“British sprinting is really stepping up and I’m glad to be a part of it,” said Gemili, the sixth Briton to go under 10 seconds but the first to combine it with a sub-20 seconds 200.. “I felt my hamstring go as I dipped but I’m in good spirits.” Czech world champion Vitezlav Vesely was initially given first place in a field containing all the world’s best exponents when he hurled the men’s javelin 88.18 meters with his sixth and final throw.
However, Kenya’s Commonwealth gold medalist Julius Yego, whose last throw of 91.39 was initially ruled out of bounds, was eventually awarded the victory after photos of his throw were re-examined. Britain’s Olympic champion Greg Rutherford, returning to competition after suffering an adductor muscle injury, won the men’s long jump with his second leap of 8.35 meters aided by a slight following wind. The mark equaled Rutherford’s second best distance in a season in which he is seeking to add the world title to his Olympic, Commonwealth and European golds.
The meeting lost its leading attraction on Sunday morning when Britain’s Olympic and world 10,000 and 5,000 meters champion Mo Farah withdrew after a stressful few days following a BBC television program alleging his coach Alberto Salazar had been involved in doping.
Farah, had been scheduled to run over 1,500 meters. “This week had been very stressful and taken a lot out of me,” he said in a statement. “I have not been able to focus properly on today’s race and after the events of the last few days feel emotionally and physically drained.”
Editing by Mitch Phillips, firstname.lastname@example.org