Portland 2016 News: Rutherford out of World Indoors, Merritt out of USA Indoors, from EME News

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Merritt_AriesQ1-LondonDL15.jpgAries Merritt, out of USA Indoors, photo by PhotoRun.net

Rutherford_Greg-Beijing15.jpgGreg Rutherford is out of World indoors, photo by PhotoRun.net

PORTLAND NEWS

PORTLAND (USA): Long Jump World champion Greg Rutherford has withdrawn from the World Indoor Championships in Portland as he is still recovering from a chest infection and a hamstring injury. "Greg is really disappointed not to be able to compete in Portland, but his body reacted harder than expected to this week's training. Defending the Olympic title is obviously Greg's main focus for 2016, so he has sensibly decided not to take any risks and to end his indoor season here. This will allow him the opportunity to concentrate on being in the best shape possible going into the outdoor season and ultimately Rio," said British Athletics performing director Neil Black. From British Athletics.

PORTLAND (USA): British Athletics has defended their decision not to send 800m runners Guy Learmonth and Michael Rimmer to Portland despite receiving invitations from the IAAF, reports Athletics Weekly. "Invites were not originally intended for track events and no invites will be extended for other track events. As such the 800m invites were reviewed as an exceptional circumstance within the general framework and intention of the selection policy. As a result, the selectors declined the invites on the basis that the athletes had not achieved the relevant qualification standard, and others who may have been significantly closer to qualifying in other track events will not be afforded the same opportunity," said a spokesperson from British Athletics.

PORTLAND (USA): Shannon Rowbury will be looking to defend her 1500m and 3000m titles at the US Indoor Championships in Portland this weekend with an eye to contest both events at the World Indoor Championships the following week. "Portland had become home for me, at least for the time being. So, to me it just made total sense to incorporate this U.S. Nationals, and then hopefully Worlds, into my training program. With the Nike Oregon Project we have two peaks within a year; I found that to be really useful for my development. My training has been coming along pretty well. Workouts have been good. I've been focusing on strength, but my top-end speed is coming along really well, also. So, I'm excited for my odds this weekend," she said. From Race Results Weekly.

KINGSTON (JAM): Eleven Jamaican athletes have been named on the team for the World Indoor Championships in Portland, informs Track Alerts. The top names on the team include world 100m hurdles champion Danielle Williams, world 200m silver medallist Elaine Thompson, former world 100m record-holder Asafa Powell and two-time world 400m finalist Stephenie Ann McPherson. In the 60 m also Odean Skeen, in women 60 m the second runner will be Simone Facey and in women hurdles Samantha Scarlett. Omar McLeod will be the medal hope in men 60 m hurdles. Kemoy Campbell is selected for 3000 m, Natoya Goule for women 800 m and Salcia Slack was invited by the IAAF for women pentathlon. Shanieka Thomas is scheduled for triple jump. The rest is for 4x400 m relays and it is not immediately known who will run also individually. In the men pool Ricardo Chambers, Fitzroy Dunkley, Nathon Allen, Dane Hyatt, Demar Murray and Demish Gaye. In the women part Chris-Ann Gordon, Patricia Hall, Verone Chambers and Ronda Whyte.

PORTLAND (USA): US Sprinter Mike Rodgers wants to win the 60 m at national championships despite the fact he does not need it because as IAAF World Indoor Tour winner he has the wild card and USA can name two more sprinters into the team. "I'm feeling pretty good. Training is going good. I just want to get out of here in Portland and get out of here healthy. Last Indoors was when I hurt myself, I fractured my ankle. I was just want to get out of here healthy and get ready for Worlds. It would mean a lot (to win), just to make a statement for World Indoors. World Indoors is on our home turf so we have to defend Portland and defend the U.S. It's going to be good to have the crowd behind us, have our own facilities, eat our own food and be in our own environment."

PORTLAND (USA): World record holder and Olympic winner Aries Merritt is at the end of the day not competing at US Indoor Championships. That also means he could not qualify for World Indoors. After last fall kidney transplantation he clocked fast 7.58 in February in Flagstaff. His goal remains Rio Olympics in summer.

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