By Citius Mag Staff
May 25, 2023
Olympic champion Marcell Jacobs has withdrawn from Sunday's upcoming 100m clash against world champion Fred Kerley at the Rabat Diamond Legaue citing a "slight lumbosacral block." Several Italian media outlets were the first to report the news.
Here's what you need to know:
– Track and field fans were set to get the first head-to-head race between Jacobs and Kerley since the Tokyo Olympic final but that matchup has now been postponed. The two will also race at the Florence Diamond League meet on June 2. This is the first time the Olympic and world champions are set to face off since Usain Bolt raced Yohan Blake at the 2012 Olympic final. Bolt was the reigning Olympic champion. Blake won gold in 2011 after Bolt was DQ’ed for a false start.
– Jacobs issued the following statement to Sportface.it (translated from Italian to English) – “ I am forced to skip the debut 100 meters and the first face-off with Kerley in Rabat, which I was really looking forward to, due to a lumbosacral nerve block that I’m working on resolving in the short term. It’s the result of a misstep and not an injury, which does however keep me from competing in Marocco. I’m in strong physical shape technical and ready for a great outdoor season. The challenge is only postponed.”
– This is not the first time Jacobs has withdrawn from a race against Kerley. In 2022, the two were announced as headliners for the Kip Keino Classic in Nairobi (Jacobs withdrew due to intestinal problems); the Prefontaine Classic (Jacobs withdrew due to a muscle injury sustained at a meet in Italy) and the Rome Diamond League (Jacobs said he was still recovering from the muscle injury). At the World Championships in Eugene, Jacobs withdrew from the 100m semifinals “in order not to compromise the rest of the season by risking a more serious injury.”
– Jacobs has not raced since finishing second in the men’s 60m final at the European Indoor Championships in March. Kerley won the Doha Diamond League men’s 200m in 19.92s and then went to Japan to run 9.88s and 9.91s for 100m at the Seiko Grand Prix in Yokohama.
– The men’s 100m in Doha is still worth watching since the field includes world championship bronze medalist Trayvon Bromell and Kenya’s Ferdinand Omanyala, who has the fastest time in the world this year with a 9.84 run at altitude in Nairobi on May 13. The meet will be televised on CNBC from 2-4 p.m. ET and can be streamed on Peacock.
Fred Kerley’s reaction to the news:
“This is why we don’t do 1v1s… Thankfully we still have Kerley, Trayvon Bromell, Letsile Tebogo, Ferdinand Omanyala, Akani Simbine, and others racing.” – Kyle Merber
“We haven’t seen Marcell race since European Indoor Champs in March, I’m disappointed not to see a single race this late into the spring. Can’t call out Fred and then pull out. I understand the bigger picture and I hope to see him in Paris but health is quite clearly an ongoing issue here.” – Jasmine Todd
“No thoughts. I’m just echoing everyone’s laughter.” – Katelyn Hutchison
Citius Mag Staff