Mark English off the pace as he misses out on 800m qualification
Mark English bowed out of the World Championships in London after finishing fifth in his 800m heat in 1:48.01, the 24-year-old unable to summon his trademark kick over the final 200m metres to snatch one of the three automatic qualifying spots.
English ran in the latter half the pack over the first lap as Uganda’s Abu Salim Mayanja towed them through 400m in a steady 52.26, and though he changed gears impressively on the final turn, the Irishman faded towards the finish, eventually coming up well shy of qualification with his time of 1:48.01. The race was won by Botswana’s Nijel Amos in 1:47.10.
“I knew that race would come down to a sprint because there was no front runners in it,” said English. “I wanted to make sure I had something left over the last 200 but I just didn’t have that today.”
English had been well off his best for much of the season after developing a nerve problem in his quadriceps, which had limited him in both training and races over the past month.
“I was able to train with it, but it was taking away from the quality of everything,” he said. “But that’s the fine line that athletes tread between success and falling down the other side. I haven’t had that same sharpness since last year or the year before but that’s what happens when you have an interrupted season. I’ll get back and get ready for the next one.”