Injured Mathieu pulled out of men’s 200m
Guardian Sports Editor
Published: Aug 17, 2013
MOSCOW, Russia – The Bahamas’ national record holder in the men’s 200 meters (m) was one of just two athletes to qualify ‘A’ standard for multiple events here in Moscow, Russia, and at the end of the day, he might be one of just two not to compete.
Dealing with shin splints which bothered him from the BTC National Open Track and Field Championships, Michael Mathieu pulled out of the 200m here in Moscow, Russia, and is now back on his way to the western world. He resides and trains in Orlando, Florida.
It was a huge blow for The Bahamas as it affected a number of events here at these 14th International Association of Athletic Federations’ (IAAF) World Championships.
Mathieu’s diversity could have led to him being entered for either the men’s 200 or 400m, and also serving as a contributor for either the men’s 4x100m or 4x400m relay, or even both. He was really expected to contest the 200m though – an event he set the national record in last year.
According to reports, the shin splints hampered Mathieu’s progress since the BTC nationals, but for some reason team officials decided to take a chance and bring him to Russia anyway.
“Well Michael’s injury came as a surprise to me as well. I was aware that he had some injuries after nationals but I wasn’t aware of the depth of it,” said Team Bahamas Head Coach George Cleare yesterday.
“With him being a part of the gold medal winning team last year, I think that bringing him was a calculated risk that we decided to take, and I would probably do it again,” said Cleare. “The gamble was to bring him in and see if he could go. If he could have given us just one leg, that would have helped tremendously. Basically, we just rolled the dice and it didn’t roll in our favor.”
The injury is common among track and field athletes given the amount of pressure that is constantly applied to their lower legs. In Mathieu’s case, after seeing a doctor here in Moscow, it was determined that he had inflammation below his left knee and above the ankle, causing immense pain.
Mathieu will reportedly skip the remainder of the season, and is expected to make a full recovery in time for next year. Ignoring the injury could result in a more serious condition such as a stress fracture or broken bones.
As for Team Bahamas, it will go on without him. The team still has the heats, and hopefully the finals, of the men and women’s 4x100m relays on Sunday.