Australia's new middle distance champion Alex Rowe will not get a chance to add a medal to his new joint record, the 800m runner has torn a hamstring in training and is out of the Commonwealth Games.
Rowe’s extraordinary month that saw him equal the long standing national record in Monaco last week only to be fined by his sport has ended in the most disappointing fashion.
“I’m very disappointed with the injury that has happened today (Friday), but from preliminary observations of the scan it seems that the architecture of the muscle hasn’t been disrupted so it will hopefully not become something that is recurring across my career,” Rowe said.
“This outcome is a learning curve for me on preparation and training ahead of a major championship and I’ll be learning from it to make sure that when I’m back next year I’m a wiser and stronger athlete before competition at the world championships.
“I’ve had a fantastic season and I’m a new national record holder. It’s been a great year. From my perspective, I don’t want this to be something that detracts from all the other athletes competing in the next week and a half. And realistically there are much worse things happening in the world than my hamstring that should draw people’s attention away.”
Rowe said he only had himself to blame for his injury admitting the impatience of youth had cost him his chance in the Commonwealth Games.
Asked by his coach to run 300m repetitions in 35 to 36 seconds he pushed harder and ran in 34 seconds and that was when his body gave way.
"I just pushed it too much. I'm young that's probably what I've got a propensity to do such a thing, to push it to hard. Now I know hopefully I'll be a bit wiser and a bit older to know to hold back," he said
He added: "I'm feeling ok. Obviously it's a really really disappointing thing to happen and I'm obviously devastated but having said that I've had a fantastic year an I've had a great season.
"The injury isn't too bad so I know I'll be back for next season. At the end of he day there's more to life than sport."
While disappointed he was also able to reflect on his recent achievement and was encouraged to think of what now might be in store for him.
"To run 1:44 at 22 years of age I know I'm a long long way from my peak," he said.
"I definitely believe in the future I can run really fast, I don't know how fast I won't put any limits yet but I know I can hopefully next year get back and the goal will be to make the world championships final so there's definitely more to give and this is just a minor hiccup."
Rowe was hoping to be able to make the final and press the world champion David Rudisha in the Commonwealth Games but a torn hamstring in training has ended those hopes.
A week ago Rowe equalled the 46-year-old national record of Olympic gold medallist Ralph Doubell with his run in Monaco at the Diamond League meet.
Days later it emerged that for all his efforts and the praise of his sporting body he was to be docked a third of his preparation funding money because he did not attend the team’s training camp in Newcastle in time.
He will be out for four to six weeks after an MRI confirmed a grade one tear but most importantly he is out of the games.
with Amanda Hoh