Canadians to watch tonight at the world athletics championships
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It’s a long shot, but Canada has a shot at winning its second World Championships medal in Oregon tonight. Meanwhile, two other Canadian contenders will try to qualify for the final of their events. Here’s what to watch when the Day 7 action at Hayward Field kicks off at 8 p.m. ET:
Aaron Brown in the men’s 200m final (10:50 p.m. ET)
Olympic champion André De Grasse’s decision to withdraw from the event after failing to qualify for the 100m final robs Canada of one of its best medal chances of the competition. It would be great if Brown made it to the podium, but hats off to him for reaching the 200m final for the third straight time in a major championship. The 30-year-old Canadian champion placed sixth at the 2019 world championships and at the Olympics last summer.
All eyes tonight will be on Americans Noah Lyles and Erriyon Knighton, budding rivals who posted the two fastest times overall in the heats and semis. Lyles, 25, is the reigning world champion and won bronze at the Tokyo Olympics. Knighton is an 18-year-old phenom who placed fourth in Tokyo and earlier this year ran a world record 19.49 seconds to overtake Lyles as the fourth fastest 200m runner of all time, behind Usain Bolt, Yohan Blake and Michael Johnson.
Also lining up tonight is American Kenny Bednarek, who won silver in Tokyo and gives the United States a good shot at sweeping the medals here. 100m champion Fred Kerley’s hopes of a world championship double were dashed when the American failed to progress past the semis.
The women’s 200m final takes place just before the men’s, at 10:35 p.m. ET. The Jamaican trio of Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Shericka Jackson and Elaine Thompson-Herah are aiming for another podium after winning all three medals in the 100m (in that order). But they will have to knock out defending champion Dina Asher-Smith of Great Britain, and American Tamara Clark is another potential spoiler.
Moh Ahmed in the men’s 5,000m heats (9:10 p.m. ET)
Canada’s top distance runner, competing in the second of two series, is aiming for his third straight major championship medal in the 5,000m after winning bronze at the 2019 World Championships in Doha and silver at the Olympics in Doha. Tokyo. The latter was the first medal for a Canadian in an Olympic long-distance track event. Last weekend, Ahmed placed sixth in the 10,000m, repeating his results from the 2021 Olympics and 2019 Worlds in the longest race.
Another Canadian, Charles Philibert-Thiboutot, will race in the first heat. Last April, he broke a 36-year-old Canadian record by running a 5 km road race in 13 minutes and 35 seconds. The 31-year-old was knocked out in the men’s 1,500m semi-final last weekend.
The 5000m final will take place on Sunday evening. Learn more about Ahmed here.
Marco Arop in the men’s 800m semifinal (10 p.m. ET)
The talented 23-year-old looks set to challenge for his first major championship medal after posting the fastest overall time (1:44.56) in last night’s opening rounds. Arop placed seventh in the 800m final as a world rookie in 2019 before turning pro, and he has won three times on the Diamond League circuit in the past two seasons. That includes a victory over Olympic champion Emmanuel Korir and silver medalist Ferguson Rotich last year at the same track in Oregon. But, a few weeks before that in Tokyo, Arop fell short of a seventh-place finish in her Olympic semi-final after winning her opening round.
Arop is a big guy – at 6-foot-4 and 170+ pounds, he towers over many of his competitors. Some have wondered if this powerful frame is better suited to one-off Diamond League races than the grueling three-round format of the Olympics and World Championships. Maybe we’ll get an answer tonight when he enters the third of three runs. Learn more about Arop in this story from CBC Sports’ Devin Heroux, which ran an impressive 2:37 in the 800m race for members of the media today at Hayward Field.
Other things to know:
*Although neither is considered a medal contender, three Canadians are competing in the women’s 800m heats, starting at 8:10 p.m. ET: Lindsey Butterworth (heat 1), Addy Townsend (heat 4) and Maddy Kelly (heat 5). Learn more about Butterworth and Townsend in this story from CBC Sports’ Doug Harrison.
*Canada’s Liz Gleadle qualified for the women’s javelin final by throwing the seventh-best throw overall in qualifying last night (60.38m). The medal round takes place on Friday evening.
How to watch:
Exclusive live coverage of the World Championships by CBC Sports is ongoing and continues daily until the end of Sunday’s game. The events are broadcast live on CBCSports.ca, the CBC Sports app and the free CBC Gem streaming service, and there will be weekend broadcasts on the CBC Television Network. Check out the full release and broadcast schedule here for more details.
CBC Gem also airs a daily live prime time show focused on coverage of the day’s events with broadcasters Andi Petrillo, Mark Lee, Kate Van Buskirk, Michael Smith and Scott Russell lineside. It is preceded by a daily 30-minute digital broadcast hosted by Olympian Anastasia Bucsis with reports from Devin Heroux, who is on the ground in Eugene. This show is available on CBC Gem, CBCSports.ca and the CBC Olympics Twitter, Facebook and YouTube streams.