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Olympic champion Karsten Warholm fears he suffered a torn hamstring during his first outing of the season last night, less than six weeks out from the start of the World Athletics Championships.
Warholm, one of the stars of the sport, shattered the 400m hurdles world record en route to gold in Tokyo last summer in a race considered among the greatest of all time.
The Norwegian will be looking to win a third straight world title in Oregon next month, but, making a late start to his outdoor campaign, pulled up shortly after clearing the first hurdle during Sunday’s Diamond League meeting in Rabat, Morocco.
"I am very disappointed for this injury," he said. "I think it's a hamstring tear, I will focus on treating it and come back stronger.”
Warholm’s misfortune came on the same day as Sydney McLaughlin, who broke the women’s world record in the same event to win Olympic gold last year, made a sensational return in her first 400m hurdles race since Tokyo.
The American ran 51.61secs at a meet in Nashville, which would go down as the third-fastest run in history, though there is doubt as to whether the time will be ratified due to the incorrect spacing of two hurdles.
Elsewhere in Rabat, there was British success in the men’s 1500m as Jake Wightman took the win ahead of compatriot Jake Hayward, while Jamaican superstar Elaine Thompson-Herah set a new meeting record to take the women’s 100m in 10.83.