Liberia’s lone representative at the 2017 IAAF World Championship, Emmanuel Matadi, over the weekend bowed out in the semi-final stage of the Men’s 100m at the Olympic Stadium in London.
Matadi, 26, finished 14th overall with a time of 10.20 seconds, finishing below US sprinter Christopher Belcher by 0.002 seconds, after both ran the same time down to hundredths of a second.
The young sprinter qualified for the semi-final after finishing as one of the six provisional runners in Heat 1, 0.006 seconds above Barbados’s Ramon Gittens and 0.03 seconds below Cejhae Greene of Antigua & Barbuda.
Matadi, who finished 5th in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, enjoyed the preliminaries of the 100m after winning Heat 1 with a time of 10.27s that qualified him alongside Brendon Rodney of Canada and Mart Otieno Odhiambo of Kenya to the next round.
According to Liquid Sports in Ghana, following his first race at the event, the Liberian expressed delight after finishing first in the preliminaries. He, however, added that there was a need for improvement. “I wanted to be faster but it’s early days and the first round, so we’ll see what happens next. This race was really just about getting out and getting through, so onto the next,” Matadi told Liquid Sports.
The Men’s 100m produced a shocking result after 35 year old Justin Gatlin of the USA finished ahead of 30 year old Usain Bolt, who was running his last 100m, to win the gold medal in 9.92s, with silver going to 22 year old US sprinter Christian Coleman, who finished with a time of 9.94s.
A terrible start for Bolt prevented him from making a perfect finish. He clinched bronze in the IAAF 100m, where he has collected 11 golds and two silvers.