Cuba’s Robles loses gold on inadvertent hit to Xiang

Cuban Dayron Robles became another high-profile disqualification at the World Championships as he was stripped of his 110m hurdles gold medal.

Robles made contact with China’s Liu Xiang and was disqualified after the Chinese appealed, handing Jason Richardson the gold and Liu the silver.

An appeal from the Cuban team was rejected and Britain’s Andy Turner was awarded the bronze medal. Usain Bolt was disqualified from the 100m for a false start on Sunday.

Olympic champion and world record holder Robles brushed Liu’s arm, causing him to trip on the final hurdle and finish in 13.27 seconds, behind Richardson, who clocked 13.16.

“Robles hit me twice, at the ninth hurdle he pulled at me but I’m sure it wasn’t intentional,” said Liu, who won 2004 Olympic gold and the 2007 world title.

“I lost my balance when I came to the 10th hurdle because of the bump. If not for the incident, I would have been the gold medallist.”

European and Commonwealth champion Turner, who was removed from elite-level funding only two years ago after it was decided he was not capable of reaching major finals, struggled through the semi-final after a poor start.

He was initially placed fourth in 13.44 and said: “I didn’t want to win a medal by default, but I have won a World Championship bronze medal and I’m over the moon with that, although I’m still disappointed with how I ran it.”

Britain’s William Sharman finished joint-fifth with Aries Merritt, complaining straight afterwards about clashing with the American over the first two hurdles.

“I was capable of getting a medal – it’s really frustrating,” Sharman said. “I’m an ambitious guy and when there are eight equal individuals on the start line I’m not eighth so I’m pretty gutted about that.

“It’s been a hard year and I haven’t been able to train for a large part due to injuries.”

South African Oscar Pistorius, 24, saw his historic appearance at the championships come to an end as he failed to make the final of the 400m. The first amputee athlete ever to compete in the competition finished last in his semi-final.

Defending champion LaShawn Merritt was the fastest in qualifying, timed in 44.76 seconds after recently returning from a doping ban. Also through to Tuesday’s final are Grenadan pair Kirani James and Rondell Bartholomew, Tabarie Henry of the US Virgin Islands and Jamaica’s Jermaine Gonzales.

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