Mike Rowbottom: Kenya on top, and Russia struggling in Beijing. So what’s that about?

Mike Rowbottom: Kenya on top, and Russia struggling in Beijing. So what’s that about?

Two years ago, Russia concluded the Moscow International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in second place behind the United States, but with more golds - seven to six. Two years on, as the 15th World Championships here move into their final day, late golds by Sergey Shubenkov in the 110 metres hurdles and Mariya Kuchina in the women’s high jump have rescued the Russian cause from humiliation.








Mike Rowbottom: Bolt and Coe cannot take the whole of athletics on their own shoulders

Mike Rowbottom: Bolt and Coe cannot take the whole of athletics on their own shoulders

As we, the summoned and assembled media, awaited the start of Usain Bolt’s press conference in a very large room inside the Nuo Hotel - a start which was by now delayed more than half an hour - it became apparent that the reggae which had been thumping and bumping away in the foreground during that time was on a loop.

Bob Marley’s One Love did its thing once again. Meanwhile the long black leather sofa in front of us remained untenanted, flanked by dotted red and green spotlights trained on the crystalline ceiling.