Athletics

JAAA boss sets the record straight on Taylor controversy

BY HOWARD WALKER
Senior staff reporter
walkerh@jamaicaobserver.com

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

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Another major championship, another controversy.

This time the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) has come under fire and now has to be working to clarify why star athlete Christopher Taylor seems upset at not running the 200m instead of the 400m at the ongoing IAAF World Junior Championship in Finland.

The Calabar High standout Taylor, who was named male captain of the team, said he did not choose to run the 400m, but it doesn't matter which event he runs.

“This is a decision that my country has made, so I am just going out there to represent to the best of my abilities. But things happened and I just have to go with it,” said Taylor at a press conference in Finland.

With news filtering through that the prodigy was unhappy, the JAAA came under fire, especially on social media where it was suggested that the governing body was at fault for Taylor competing in the 400m instead of the 200m, which he indicated he wanted to run from as early as January.

However, JAAA President Dr Warren Blake attempted to clear the air on the controversy.

“For an athlete to run in an event, he has to compete in it at Trials (National Championship). Chris Taylor competed in the senior event and his team requested for us to consider him for the 400m for the junior event.

“If you noticed, he was also down for the 200m (and) if you look back at the Trial start list, he was down to run the 200m at the championship and he did not run,” Dr Blake noted.

“So, with all of that, when it came to the selection committee meeting, the only thing we had before us is that Taylor ran in the 400m; no request, not anything about the 200m,” he added.

“People trying to slaughter us and if you look at the Trials, only the people who get a medical exemption got selected for an event they didn't run at the Trials,” said Dr Blake.

He reiterated that Taylor was only selected for the 400m because that is what he participated in at the Trials.

“He didn't compete in the 200m, so we couldn't select him for that. His coach knows because he is part of the selection committee,” Dr Blake said.

Taylor ran two National Junior Records recently in the 100m with 10.11s and the 400m with 44.88s.

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