By Dean “The Sportsman” Greenaway
There’s a place no track and field athlete likes to be—fourth, just missing the podium! There’s also another place no track and field athlete likes to be either—having the 9th best time in a semifinal event.
On Sunday at the Ergo Arena in Sopot, Poland, sprint sensation Tahesia Harrigan-Scott narrowly missed her third straight IAAF World Indoor Championships 60m final by thousands of a second. Your measuring tape won’t help here—bring out the laser instead.
Harrigan-Scott, who made the semis for a third time after running 7.20 seconds in her prelims to automatically advance, equaled her season’s best of 7.17 seconds in the third of three semis won by eventual winner, Jamaica’s Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce in 7.08 seconds. Britain’s Asha Phillips ran a personal best of 7.09 and Trinidad and Tobago’s Michlle-Lee Ahye third in a national indoor record 7.10 followed by Harrigan-Scott.
Harrigan-Scott’s time equaled that of Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell-Brown in heat two who was one of the two fastest losers to advance along with Ahye. Harrigan-Scott and Campbell-Brown’s time equaled the eight best from the semis, but the Jamaican was thousands of a second quicker than the BVI athlete.
A disappointed Harrigan-Scott—who was not just the only athlete who won a 2008 medal from the championships in Valencia, Spain in the semifinals but the only athlete who was a finalist—blamed herself for not advancing.
“I should have just kept running though the line instead if trying to dip,” said Harrigan-Scott a 2008 bronze medalist and 2010 finalist where she placed seventh. “I started reaching at the line instead of just running through. It caused me to get long. I feel good overall but I would have felt better if I was in the final.”