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Moscow display underlines Gemili's potential on global stage
3:23pm Wednesday 21st August 2013 in Sport
By Charlie Talbot-Smith in Moscow
ADAM Gemili was powerless to prevent Usain Bolt from becoming the most successful athlete in World Championship history in Russia but he is confident it is only a matter of time before he is challenging for major medals of his own.
Gemili ended up fifth in the 200m final at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow in a time of 20.08s, only four hundredths of a second behind America’s Curtis Mitchell who took bronze.
And while that was slightly down on his historical effort in the semi-final the night before in Russia, it is worth remembering this was the 19-year-old’s first-ever World Championship final appearance.
The night before, Gemili had won his semi-final in a blistering time of 19.98s, only the second ever Briton to go under the 20-second barrier and the first-ever European teenager to achieve the feat.
Bolt, meanwhile, won gold in the 200m, 100m and 4x100m relay, the latter in which the British quartet, including Gemili, were thrown out of bronze for an illegal changeover, to become the most successful athlete in World Championship history.
And despite the disappointing end, Harry Aikines-Aryeetey and James Ellington’s exchange was the illegal one, Gemili, with his best years ahead of him, cannot wait to continue his progression.
“What an incredible experience that was for my first senior final, to be outside of Usain Bolt and just being the top eight in the world and then finishing fifth, I’m very proud and very grateful,” said Gemili.
“I was introduced just after Bolt when the whole crowd erupted and I was thinking ‘Wow I hope one day that could be me’.
“It just puts a smile on my face so I can stay relaxed.
“It was very close to a medal, and I missed out on the 100m final at the London 2012 Olympics last summer by four hundredths of a second as well.
“Hopefully as I get older and a bit stronger that gap will come down and in a few years I will be up there getting medals.
“It’s a lot of hard rounds and I have missed a lot of endurance work this season. I can’t complain with fifth in the world.
“I’m walking away with a new personal best and fifth in the world so it’s two thumbs up from me.
“I’m only 19, I still have a lot of growing to do physically and mentally so I hope in a few years I can be out there executing.”
Gemili was lost for words after the quartet of himself Aikines-Aryeetey, Ellington and Dwain Chambers were denied their bronze in the final event of the World Championships.
Chambers too was distraught but as the senior member of the team was left as the spokesperson for Gemili, Aikines-Aryeetey and Ellington and is adamant they will bounce back.
“It’s emotional, to be able to cross the line in third place and secure yourself a medal is great and we were all looking forward to getting on the podium,” said Chambers.
“But this is sport and it’s just unfortunate that we were not able to be out there in the stadium experiencing what those guys on the podium did.
“All we can do now is get back home, build up our team spirits and move on to next year. Just because we did not succeed the way we wanted does not mean you stop.
“You get back up again so that’s what you have to do and what we will do.”
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