A “do or die” effort from University of Bath graduate Lawrence Clarke wasn’t quite enough to secure a place in the 110m hurdles final at the World Athletics Championships in Beijing.
Clarke, coached by Malcolm Arnold at the Sports Training Village, got off to a flying start in Thursday’s semi-final and was well placed in third after 60m.
However, he couldn’t maintain that pace and hit the last hurdle, causing him to lose his balance and stumble over the line in seventh in 13.53 – still Clarke’s fifth-fastest time of 2015.
Victory went to France’s Dimitri Bascou in 13.16, a fraction ahead of defending champion David Oliver of the United States.
Clarke, who completed a Masters degree in Management this summer, told the BBC: “I knew this was a do or die race and I absolutely went for it.
“It’s probably the fastest I have ever run, trying to hang on to David Oliver, but in the end I was just too tired. I was hoping to get through as a fastest loser, like I did at the Olympics when I finished fourth, but it was not to be.
“There is less than a year to go to the Olympic Games and that is what I have been dreaming of for a long time. If I can hang on to that fitness I will get there.”