Justin Gatlin got one over Usain Bolt and still got booed by the crowd.
The focus of the media, pundits and fans was on Gatlin’s unpure blood record from two previous positive testing.
They all failed to acknowledge that Bolt did not come to the party this time around.
He also struggled at the qualifiers and actually came 3rd behind Christian Coleman in the final.
The Bolt loss was remarkable because of the age difference between Gatlin and Bolt. Gatlin is 35 and Bolt is 30. A 5 years difference in athletics, particularly for a 100m race is a lot.
Usain Bolt’s failure to win his final individual race will not erase his legendary status, both in the minds of his adoring fans and as far as records go.
He is simply the best short distance athletes the world have ever seen, a box office triple Olympic gold medalist and a fitting showmanship to go with it.
However, Gatlin tenacity to keep coming back and keep having a go at reclaiming the title he last won at Helsinki in 2005 before Bolt burst on to the scene, despite the open jeers, savagery and hostility directed at him is admirable.
Any other athlete would probably have crumbled under the pressure of dislike he was continuously subjected to anytime he file out, particularly against Bolt.
While it would have been fitting for Bolt to bow out with another gold medal, Gatlin seems to need this victory, even more, he played second fiddle to Bolt throughout his career from the moment Bolt arrived at the scene, not helped by his doping history accompanied by double ban, but at 35 years of age, he seems to have less time available to him in the sport even though he has not announced a pending retirement, In contrast, Bolt who is 30yr and still have at least one Olympic in him if he chooses to continue has announced he is retiring from the sport.
No matter how you slice it, Bolt is still the greatest Athlete on the track but Gatlin does not deserve the crowd savagery after beaten Bolt.
If anything, it reminds us that Bolt is Human after all and the sportsmanship demonstrated by both of them after the race is commendable.