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Yohan Blake Crashes out of Glasgow Diamond League Dash


Double Olympic silver medalist Yohan Blake pulled up midway the race in the Sainsbury’s Glasgow Diamond League 100m dash Friday and had to be carried off the track in a wheelchair. His compatriot Nickel Ashmeade won in 9.97secs, the same time as second-place Mike Rodgers of the USA. Jamaica’s Nesta Carter was third place with 9.98.

However, a statement update posted on facebook Saturday quoted Blake’s manager, Cubie Seegobin, saying: “It seems to be initially cramp. The doctors here in Glasgow were excellent. They did an ultra-scan, and it showed no damage. Today, we will do a major scan and MRI to be certain and complete.”

Blake, the second fastest man in history who was plagued by fitness problems in 2013, was slow out of the blocks and looked uncomfortable as the race reached the half-way mark. He then suddenly pulled up and crashed to the track clutching his hamstring.

Apologizes to Scottish Fans

According to a Guardian online report on July 10, Blake apologized to the Scots in a pre-race interview for snubbing the upcoming Commonwealth Games, noting that he had to put the 2016 Olympics as top priority. The second fastest man explained that having just returned from a series of hamstring injuries, he was not prepared to jeopardize his preparations for the Rio Games.

The report further quoted Blake saying: “Of course, I’m disappointed to be missing out on Glasgow 2014 but it’s in my best interest. I’m trying to be positive and there will be many more Commonwealth Games to look forward to.

“I’m sorry I’m not going to be here, the Scottish people have really been looking out for me. But they understand the level of competitive person I am.

“It was a tough decision to make, but when I was talking to my manager and my coach, they both said I had to get back to the level I was at before because there is the World Championships and Olympics coming up in the next couple of years. I have to be at my best for that.”

Two weeks ago, Blake missed the Jamaica Trials to select a team for the Commonwealth Games and would have had to seek medical exemption to be included. The fact that soon after, he competed for money at the Diamond League led some to accuse him of chasing cash over medals and did not mitigate the view that he had slapped the Commonwealths in the face.

As reported by The Guardian, Seegobin insisted that the 24-year-old was not fit enough to take on the Glasgow 2014 challenge.

“We made a decision, based on Yohan’s condition, not to compete at the Commonwealth Games and that was in his best interests,” said Seegobin prior to Friday’s race.

“As you can tell from last week in Lausanne [where Blake could finish only 6th in the 200m], we can’t tell exactly where he is coming off the injury. People forget that Yohan hasn’t competed at this level since 2012 in Brussels and he is trying to find his way back. He’s in great shape now and is not hurt or anything like that.

“But if he had gone to the Jamaican Trials and not made the team, you guys would be saying he wasn’t in shape. So it has taken him a little while and it is his decision. It’s nothing against the Commonwealth Games. He has to do what is in his best interests.”

Seegobin assessment that his client was not fit enough to run in both competitions proved correct when he could not finish the race.

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