IAAF World Championships

No Bolt means new 200m world champion

2017-08-07 13:50
Usain Bolt (AP)

London- Usain Bolt will surrender another world title. This one, without even taking the track.

The Jamaican great is skipping the 200m at the world championships, bringing an end to his string of four straight titles in his favorite event.

This was planned. The loss to Justin Gatlin - along with up-and-coming sprinter Christian Coleman - in the 100m? Not so much.

So far, Bolt's farewell tour in London hasn't exactly going according to design, and he'll be only a spectator when the heats of the 200m begin on Monday.

He still has the 4x100m relay at the end of the meet.

"I'm just disappointed I couldn't do better for (the fans), but that's how it goes sometimes," Bolt said after his bronze-medal finish on Saturday.

"The support has been outstanding throughout the years."

With no Bolt, the 200m is wide open for the first time since, well, Tyson Gay, held off a rising Bolt at the 2007 worlds in Osaka, Japan.

Waiting in the wings is Wayde van Niekerk, the South African who is currently the world and Olympic 400m champion.

He's one of the favorites in the 200m as well. The semi-finals are on Wednesday and the final on Thursday.

Like Van Niekerk, Isaac Makwala of Botswana is trying his hand at the 200-400 double. He has the top time in the 200 this season and a healthy amount of respect for Van Niekerk.

"Wayde van Niekerk is my brother. We want to conquer the world together and make the final for Africa," Makwala said.

"He is so friendly and a lovely guy."

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