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IAAF World Championship: Athletics statistician says qualification standards fair enough

Olalekan Soetan, an athletics statistician, on Wednesday commended the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), for setting fair qualification standards for athletes ahead of the 2019 World Championships.


The upcoming 17th edition of the championships would hold from Sept. 27 to Oct.6, in Doha, Qatar.

Soetan told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the standards set reflected the authentic performance of top athletes in the world.

The set standards for the men and women’s 100m are 10.10seconds and 11.24seconds, standards for the 200m is 20.40 seconds and 23.02seconds, while the triple jump men and women is 16.95m and 14.20m, respectively.

The set standards for the 400m is 45.30seconds and 51.80seconds.

He said that the championships would produce the best atmosphere for quality-performance.

“The standards set for various events are fair, since these are always set to reflect the true and current performances of topmost athletes.

“It sets the best atmosphere where quality-performances can foster a records breaking competition.

“The world championships in athletics is all about the best athletes, champions of nations in the world,’’ he added.

Soetan said he believed that the standards were not set to eliminate any category of athletes, but to minimise the rounds/heats top athletes would run before performing in various finals.

“The fact is that some top athletes, who are event leaders on the IAAF top lists in various events might not win their national trials.

“Only champions from every nation would have been invited to compete at the two highest ranked competitions under the IAAF.

“And to stage a befitting championships, there are limited spots to be filled with elite performers, regardless of the athletes categories,’’ he said.

Reacting to Cuba’s Jordan Diaz’s 17.4m jump in the 2018 Youth Olympics which supersedes the standard set by IAAF, Soetan said that he was optimistic that the world would want to see him compete.

“Though the young Cuban by age is a youth, his 17.4m is better than our national record in Triple Jump. That’s an elite performance by all standards and ranks 5th on the IAAF top list.

“Youth or no youth, the world wants to see him compete against the best in the world and that’s the main objective of the World championships,’’ he said. (NAN)

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