Christian Coleman after gold: Johnson doesn't pay my bills or sign my cheques

Updated: Sep 30, 2019, 08:26 IST | AFP

Christian Coleman clocks personal best of 9.76 sec to clinch 100m gold; hits back at US sprint legend Michael for pointing to his three missed drug tests

Coleman crosses the finish line. Pic/ Getty Images
Coleman crosses the finish line. Pic/ Getty Images

Doha: Christian Coleman hit back at US sprinting legend Michael Johnson on Saturday after powering to a brilliant 100m victory at the World Championships. Coleman blew away his rivals to take the first major outdoor title of his career, clocking a world-leading personal best of 9.76 sec at the Khalifa Stadium. Defending champion Justin Gatlin took silver in 9.89sec at the age of 37 while Canada's Andre De Grasse claimed bronze in 9.90sec.

The win cemented Coleman's status as the man to beat at next year's Tokyo Olympics, and elevated the American to the head of a pack of sprinters aiming to be the new face of athletics in the post-Usain Bolt era. In the eyes of Johnson, however, Coleman has already forfeited the right to be the figurehead of track and field after the missed drugs test [three] controversy that marred his build-up to the games. Coleman, however, was unmoved by Johnson's remarks as he celebrated Saturday's win. "Michael Johnson doesn't pay my bills or sign my cheques," Coleman said. "So I don't really care what he has to say."

Coleman was only able to compete in Doha after the case against him was withdrawn because of a technical loophole. Johnson however maintains that the odour of wrongdoing will continue to linger around Coleman, even if he ultimately avoided sanction. "It completely disqualifies him, at this point, from ever being that face of the sport," Johnson said in a BBC interview recently.

USA's Christian Coleman exults after winning the 100m gold in Doha on Saturday. Pic/ AFP 

Coleman gave Johnson's remarks short shrift though, believing that ultimately he will be judged by his performances on the track. "I think the face of the sport goes to the people who are putting up the performances," he said.

Coleman withdraws from 200m event

Michael Johnson

Doha: Christian Coleman has withdrawn from the 200m at the World Championships, the United States Track and Field Federation confirmed. No reason for his 200m withdrawal was provided.

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