by Michael Bascombe
LAUSANNE, Switzerland, July 5, 2013 – Despite a new national record and consistent performances this season Kim Collins will not represent St Kitts and Nevis at the IAAF World Championships in Athletics in Moscow, Russia next month.
Officials of the St Kitts & Nevis Amateur Athletics Association (SKNAAA) remain adamant that Collins will not be a part of any national team representing the Federation after he was stripped of his accreditation at the Olympic Games in London last year.
Collins finished fourth in the Men’s 100 metres at the Diamond League Meet in Lausanne on Thursday, in a new national record of 9.97 seconds. He was one of four finishers who dipped below 10 seconds including American Tyson Gay (9.79), Asafa Powell of Jamaica (9.88, SB) and Michael Rodgers of the USA (9.96, =SB).
It was the fastest time for Collins since he ran 9.98 seconds to win the 100m at the 2002 Commonwealth Games. More than a decade later and the 37 year-old is running faster, prompting calls for a mending of the differences between Collins and athletics officials in his homeland.
“May be my Federation may see this and wise up and put their differences aside,” said Collins. “I don’t see why I should have to be the bigger man. I’m not the one in the position to make the decision. They’re in the position, be the bigger man and do the right thing,” he said.
Fans of Collins also took to twitter calling for the SKNAA to put London behind and include Collins in the squad for the World Championships.
“@kimcollins100m at 37, NR/PR 9.97. Hey, St Kitts Federation, apologise to the man. You need him, he doesn’t need you,” said one tweet.
“I really would be criminal if @kimcollins100m were not to compete in Moscow. Amazing 9.97. If St Kitts won’t let him run can’t we adopt him,” another queried.
“Most amazing performance of the evening at #LausanneDL has to be @kimcollins100m going 9.97s PB.”
Last week the SKNAAA announced that an impasse involving its elite athletes at the London Games was resolved.
“We had to do an evaluation of what transpired in London and we met with all of the athletes who competed in London and gave them an opportunity to bring forth to the table what their interpretation of what transpired,” said Evris Huggins, SKNAAA’s spokesman.
“We reviewed the contract and allowed them to see where they have made mistakes on the contract and where they breached the team contract and where they breached the code of conduct. They have all written letters of apologies to both the SKNAAA and SKNOC (St Kitts & Nevis Olympic Committee) and vowed not to have similar occurrences with that type of behavior because that is something we will not be tolerating.”
However, Huggins did not reveal if Collins was among the athletes who submitted letters of apologies to the association.
In an interview earlier this year, the former world 100m champion insisted that he did no wrong and banished the SKNAAA. “I am the first man to get in trouble for allegedly having sex with his wife,” he told a British newspaper.
Collins, the most decorated athlete in St Kitts & Nevis, retired in September 2009 following the World Championships. But he returned to track in January of 2011 and won two bronze medals at the World Championships that year, at age of 34.
August 25 is Kim Collins Day in St Kitts in honour of his gold medal at the World Championships in Paris, France in 2003.
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