Athletes 'quarantined' as stomach bug hits World Championships

Gastroenteritis

Botswana's Isaac Makwala insists he is fit for Tuesday's World Championship 400m final despite being told to pull out of the 200m after an outbreak of gastroenteritis at a team hotel.

London 2017 chiefs have been desperately trying to contain an outbreak of the sickness bug which hit competitors and officials staying at one of the official hotels. The German national team was affected the most and stomach flu was diagnosed with its potential medalists Robert Harting (discus throw) and David Storl (shot put).

In a statement, the Local Organising Committee confirmed that some teams' medical services had to provide medical care to athletes staying at London's Tower Hotel.

Competition organisers said on Monday that the illnesses were a result of gastroenteritis, but public health officials said yesterday that laboratory tests have confirmed two cases of norovirus among approximately 30 illness victims.

Van Niekerk, who broke the world record in taking the Olympic title last summer, was in control throughout, taking gold in a time of 43.98 seconds. However, they are performing as neutral athletes as the RusAF remains suspended.

There also was gold for Barbora Spotakova of the Czech Republic, who again won the world title in the javelin a decade after her last one.

The Tower Hotel stated that environmental health officers had investigated the problem and the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) had shown their establishment was "not the source of the illness".

Earlier the sport's governing body the IAAF had issued a statement saying: "Isaac Makwala was withdrawn from the men's 400 meter (final) due to a medical condition on the instruction of the IAAF Medical Delegate".

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Wayde van Niekerk is odds-on to complete an historic double at the World Athletics Championships after he stormed to 400m glory in London on Tuesday night.

However, there are other events happening at the IAAF World Championships which have been threatened by a very real problem - food poisoning.

He will still be allowed to compete in the 400m final if he recovers in time, although The Times does not believe that he will make it.

All the finalists got off to a good start, though ominously it was Van Niekerk who was seemingly out the quickest and the South African stormed round the opening 200-meters, building up a commanding lead.

"There is no order, it's just what I feel like".

Video footage emerged of Makwala, one of the athletes struck by a bout of the norovirus, being denied entry to the dedicated athletes entrance by security.

"It's so hard, eh, because I really see myself as such an ordinary, very boring person to be honest", he says with a slight grin.

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