Diving for the line: Russian athlete wins Diamond League race despite being tripped (VIDEO)
Russian sprint hurdler Sergey Shubenkov claimed a dramatic victory at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Rabat, winning the men’s 110m hurdles final despite being tripped by his main rival right at the finish line.
Shubenkov got off to a slow start, but came from behind to catch Omar McLeod, the Jamaican world and Olympic champion, who had led the race right from the start.
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The 28-year-old Russian recaptured the lead in the final meters before being tripped by McLeod as the Jamaican stumbled at the last hurdle, sending Shubenkov flying over the finish line.
Despite the awkward fall, the 2015 world champion managed to lean forward over the line to seal a well-deserved victory, clocking a time of 13.12 – his best result of the new season.
The Russian athlete, who was competing under neutral status in Morocco, showed his grazed elbow and scratched knees to the camera, indicating that his unexpected fall was rather painful.
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“It was a dramatic race, but a really great race,” said Shubenkov.
“And I was able to win. That’s very important. I am feeling stronger than before. Having Omar in the field gave me an extra motivation.”
McLeod’s bizarre mistake cost him a place on the podium as he ended up fifth, recording his worst result this season.
The tough rivalry between the world’s best hurdle runners is expected to culminate at the 2019 IAAF World Championships, which will take place in Doha this September.