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Men’s 4x400m relay team in jeopardy

SHELDON LONGLEY
Guardian Sports Editor
slongley@nasguard.com

Published: Aug 12, 2013

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MOSCOW, Russia – With another one of the ‘Golden Knights’ suffering an untimely injury, the prospects of the men’s 4x400 meters (m) relay team here in Moscow, doesn’t look too bright.

The team will undoubtedly have to rely on young guns such as Wesley Neymour and Ojay Ferguson now, and veterans Chris Brown and Michael Mathieu might have to run the heats and final should they advance.

Ramon Miller revealed that he was bothered by a hamstring injury in his opening round heat of the men’s 400m yesterday, and the men’s 4x400m team was placed in immediate jeopardy.

With Miller likely out, and LaToy Williams looking subpar, at best, Neymour and Ferguson and maybe even long hurdler Jeffery Gibson will be asked to make major contributions.

The heats of the relay at these 14th International Association of Athletic Federations’ (IAAF) World Championships will run on Thursday, and the final will close out the schedule at the Luzhniki Big Sports Arena on Friday evening.

“What is happening is that my teammates are a little banged up, and that’s just how it is sometimes, but that is why we have reserves, and some of the young guys would just have to step up,” said Chris Brown, who was the only Bahamian quarter-miler to get out of the first round of the men’s 400m.

“It’s tough out there. I just thank the Lord for me being healthy, and being able to put on a good show. I think that we have a lot of young guys who are willing to step up to the plate and give a good showing. We look forward to filling the gap and whatever happens, happens. We don’t have anything to prove. We just want to get into the final and hope for the best.”

LaToy Williams, who is hoping to make some sort of contribution, said that Bahamian quarter-milers always seem to “raise their games” when it comes to the long relay, and he doesn’t expect anything different this time.

“Well, this is our time to shine,” he said. “I think that once you put a baton in someone’s hands from The Bahamas, things will happen.  For the most part, we always tend to get motivated for the relay so I think we’ll be fine,” he added.

Williams himself wasn’t able to qualify for the semis of the 400m as he was only able to post a time of 46.65 seconds in his opening round heat. That was more than a second off his season’s best time.

Getting the team together, and determining the order certainly wouldn’t be a walk in the park. Brown still has the semis, and hopefully the final, of the individual 400m, Mathieu is set to run the 200m here in Moscow, Miller appears to be out for sure, Williams struggled in the open 400, and Jeffery Gibson is entered to compete in the 400m hurdles.

Given the circumstances, a medal of any kind would certainly be reason to celebrate.


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