National Association of Athletics Administrations of Trinidad and Tobago

naaatt :: media_artricles :: 2019

 

Qatari quagmire

Fazeer Mohammed :: Trinidad Express :: 29.09.2019

Would Usain Bolt have been able to bring out the fans in Doha? Maybe, but that is only speculation, although the absence of the greatest sprinter of all time—and without question the most charismatic, popular and fan-friendly athlete ever—must have detracted from the appeal of the World Athletics Championships, especially to an audience which may not be all that enamoured of track and field competition anyway.

Qatar, the super-rich state which juts out from the Arabian Peninsula into the Persian Gulf, has hosted major athletics meets before, although those were just one-day affairs on the Diamond League circuit. Now, with the first three days of competition at the premier biennial event in athletics as notable for the vast swathes of empty seats as it has been for outstanding performances from some of the finest competitors in the world, prominent names in the sport are lamenting the absence of the sort of atmosphere befitting an event of this stature.

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Qatari quagmire
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DEFENDING CHAMP DETHRONED: American Christian Coleman, left, cops 100 metres gold ahead of teammate Justin Gatlin at the IAAF World Championships, at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar, on Saturday. Two years ago, at the previous World Championships in London, Gatlin won gold and Coleman silver while the three-time champion in the event, Usain Bolt, secured the bronze. --Photo: AP

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