Bolt’s career ends with an injury
LONDON» Usain Bolt ended his spectacular career in excruciating pain.
The Jamaican star crumpled to the track with a leftleg injury as he was chasing a final gold medal for the Jamaican 4x100-meter relay team at the world championships Saturday.
Having to make up lots of ground on the anchor leg, Bolt suddenly screamed, stumbled and somersaulted as he came down, his golden farewell shattered by the first injury he has experienced at a major competition.
That wasn’t the only surprise. Great Britain went on to beat the United States in the event in a tight finish.
A sellout crowd of 60,000 fans at Olympic Stadium was primed for one last Bolt show, one last “To the World” pose after a victory, but the injury made it blatantly clear why Bolt is ready to retire. His body can no longer hold up.
“He is still the best in the world,” said fellow sprinter Justin Gatlin, Bolt’s American rival who ended up with 100meter gold and relay silver.
Bolt’s teammates on the once-fabled Jamaican sprint squad were far from unmatchable too. Bolt just had too much to make up in the final 100 meters as both Great Britain and the U.S. were ahead, and even Japan was even.
As Bolt fell to the ground, the leg with the golden shoe giving way, the crowd still went wild because the home team went on to win gold in 37.47 seconds — 0.05 of a second better than the U.S. time.
“It’s a cramp in his left hamstring, but a lot of the pain is from disappointment from losing the race,” Jamaican team doctor Kevin Jones said. “The last three weeks have been hard for him, you know. We hope for the best for him.”
The race will certainly be remembered for the gut-wrenching way in which the sport’s greatest athlete was forced to end his career.
“It just happened,” Jamaican leadoff runner Omar Mcleod said. “Usain Bolt’s name will always live on.”
Usain Bolt of Jamaica reacts after falling to the track in the men’s 4x100 relay final.