Sprinter Divine Oduduru may be disqualified from further participation in the ongoing IAAF World Championships in Doha,Qatar for his failure to show up for the 100m event on Friday, Completesports.com reports.
The Nigerian’s lane (3) was empty and a ‘did not start’ message written on his name in the result sheet after he had been confirmed for the race.
This runs foul of IAAF Rule 142.4 which specifically warns that any athlete who fails to participate in an event he has been confirmed to participate in without a valid reason will be disqualified from further participation in the championships.
“At all competitions under rules 1.1(a),(b),(c) and (f),an athlete shall be excluded from participation in all further events (including other events in which he is simultaneously participating) in the competition ,including relays,in cases where (a) a final confirmation was given that the athlete would start in an event but then failed to participate…,” reads the rule with a reminder that a fixed time for final confirmation of participation shall be published in advance.
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) technical officials seem to have run foul of this rule and unless the IAAF could be convinced otherwise, Oduduru’s participation in the championships may have ended before it even begins.
Our correspondent gathered that the duo of Oduduru and Blessing Okagbare informed Sunday Adeleye, the technical director of the federation they would not be participating in the 100m event but their names still managed to get on the start list which indicates a final confirmation of their participation was done.
With Okagbare rumoured to have pulled out of Saturday’s women’s 100m heats,the athlete will be forced to run if her name remains on the start list or she risks disqualification.
Competent sources in the AFN told our correspondent the IAAF was properly notified but they could not explain why Oduduru and Okagbare’s names appeared on the start list.
A similar infraction was committed in Beijjng, China four years ago when Okagbare failed to come out for the 200m after placing last in the final of the 100m. AFN’s explanation that she had medical issues was not bought by the IAAF and the sprinter was not allowed to run in the 4x100m relay at the Championships.
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