Big Names Out At Commonwealth Games

Bolt, Rudisha, Powell not competing; Semenya suffering from back trouble.

Recent back troubles may keep reigning 800-meter world champion Caster Semenya out of next week’s Commonwealth Games says her coach, Michael Seme.

“We are hoping for the best because Caster has been complaining about the pain for a few days now,” Seme said. “She has an appointment with a physiotherapist for today and will take advice on the next step.”

The Games, which have been marred by safety concerns, deplorable conditions of the athletes’ living quarters and unsound competition facilities, would have been Semenya’s first international competition since last summer’s world championships in Berlin.

Many top track athletes have chosen not to compete in this year’s Games, including Jamaican sprinters Usain Bolt and Asafa Powell, as well as newly-minted 800-meter world record holder David Rudisha of Kenya. Rudisha’s compatriots, Linet Masai and Asbel Kiprop, have also declared their summer track seasons to be finished.

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