GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — The expected duel between Olympic champions was a lopsided contest, with Shaunae Miller-Uibo winning the women’s 200 meters in a Commonwealth Games record and Elaine Thompson missing out on a medal.
Zharnel Hughes thought he’d won the men’s 200 but he missed out on a medal, too. Hughes was given provisional first place in a photo finish with Jareem Richardson when they crossed in 20.12, but Hughes was later disqualified.
Hughes and world championship bronze medalist Richardson were in adjacent lanes and their arms collided only meters from the finish line.
Richardson, who was inside Hughes and closing in on him quickly down the straight, appeared to be impeded, but didn’t know he’d been awarded the win until the pair had completed a lap of honor. A later protest by Hughes was rejected by officials.
“He definitely saw me coming because he broke up when I was coming up on him and I felt his arm hit me across my chest,” Richardson said. “I feel for him. To see somebody who is a track and field friend lose a medal is not a good feeling, but also I gained a gold medal from that. I’m thankful, but I feel for his loss.”
Aaron Brown of Canada took silver in 20.34 and Northern Ireland’s Leon Reid moved into third.
It was a second gold of the meet for Trinidad and Tobago, after Michelle-Lee Ahye won the women’s 100 title and relegated Jamaicans to silver and bronze.
Watching it all was eight-time Olympic champion Usain Bolt, now retired but at the Carrara Stadium to present the medals to the women’s 200-meters champion. Many expected him to be draping the gold medal over the neck of fellow Jamaican Thompson, who won the 100-200 double in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
Instead it was Miller-Uibo, who won the Olympic 400-meter title with a memorable diving finish, who won the women’s 200 title in 22.09, taking 0.11 off the games record set by another Bahamas sprinter, Debbie Ferguson, in 2002.
Shericka Jackson of Jamaica took silver in 22.18 and Dina Asher-Smith of England was third in 22.29, fractionally ahead of Thompson.
“Me and Eileen, we compete a lot. She’s a great competitor. It’s early in the season, so a lot of people weren’t in too great shape, but I think we put on a great show for the crowd,” Miller-Uibo said.
She was surprised that Thompson didn’t finish on the podium.
“Of course it’s a little shocking, but … anything can happen in the summer.”
Earlier, Kyron McMaster won the 400-meter hurdles gold medal to give the British Virgin Islands its first medal ever at the Commonwealth Games.
He won in 48.25 seconds from Jeffrey Gibson of the Bahamas and Jaheel Hyde of Jamaica. McMaster dedicated the title to his former coach Xavier “Dag” Samuels, who died last year when Hurricane Irma hit the Caribbean.
McMaster had the word “Guidance” tattooed onto his left biceps and printed on the wristband on his right arm as a tribute to Samuels.
“Tonight the gold meant a lot to the country, but I did what my coach would have wanted me to, go out there and run my race,” McMaster said. “He’s with me everywhere I go.”
The first gold medal of the night went to Jamaica, with Janieve Russell winning the women’s 400-meter hurdles.
Canada’s Christabel Nettey won the women’s long jump with a leading mark of 6.84 meters and Wycliffe Kinyamal won Kenya’s first gold medal of the games with victory in the 800 meters in 1:45.11, holding off Kyle Langford of England.
Australia picked up gold medals in the pole vault and the women’s discus.
Kurtis Marschall cleared 5.70 meters on his third and final attempt to edge Canada’s Shawn Barber. Dani Stevens broke a 20-year-old games record to win the women’s discus in with a best throw of 68.92 meters.