Emmanuel Matadi Withdraws from Men’s 200m Due to Injury

Matadi reacts after finishing 5th in the men’s 100m on Saturday at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo

Published August 2, 2021

Emmanuel Matadi announced on Sunday that he is pulling out of the men’s 200 meters due to muscle injury.

Matadi, who holds Liberia’s national records in 60m, 100m, and 200m, failed to qualify for the 100-metres semi-finals on Saturday after finishing fifth in heat six.

The two-time Olympian clocked 10.25 seconds 0.32 seconds below his personal best (9.93). The heat was won by Africa’s 100m record holder, Akani Simbine of South Africa (10.8), followed by Cote d’Ivoire’s Arthur Cisse (10.15) and Brazil’s Paulo Andre Camilo, all of whom automatically qualified for the semi-finals. 

The men’s 200m event, which is scheduled for Tuesday, August 3, should have been Matadi’s next area of focus, but the 30-year-old Olympian took to his official social media handle to announce that he needs time to rest and recover.

He also announced that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics may be his final.

“2x Olympian -For the past few weeks, I’ve had hip pain and came to find out there was a tear in the muscle. Regardless of whatever pain I may have felt I still wanted to come out there and compete in what may have been my last Olympic Games but not only for myself but for my love of Liberia. No pity party for me please, let’s just enjoy the moment of Liberia being on the world stage! AND still have two more Liberian athletes left in the fight!! Time for me to rest and rehab… Thank You all for the support I love y’all and remember,” Matadi wrote.

With the withdrawal of Matadi and elimination of Ebony Morrison from the women’s 100m hurdles, Joseph Fahnbulleh now remains Liberia’s lone representative at the Tokyo Games.

Fahnbulleh will be making his first run at the Olympics, representing Liberia in the men’s 200m. Fahnbulleh, 19, is currently ranked 20th in the world in the men’s 200m.

He met the Olympic Qualifying time in the 200m (20.24 seconds) in his first outdoor meet of the season. Then he won the NCAA Outdoor national title in June with a winning time of 19.91 seconds -- a career-best performance and 10th-fastest in collegiate history, according to his University’s website.