David Rudisha, the Olympic and world champion and world-record holder in the 800m, will miss the world championships next week with a quad muscle strain, according to his social media.
Rudisha, 28, would have been going for his fifth global title at worlds in London, where he famously lowered his world record in arguably the greatest Olympic race of all time in 2012.
Instead, he will miss worlds due to injury for the second time in three editions.
The Kenyan bowed out ahead of the 2013 Worlds after finding a right knee injury after running in New York’s Central Park that spring.
Rudisha returned to win his second world title in 2015 and repeat as Olympic champion in Rio, joining Mozambique’s Maria Mutola as the only people to take four global titles in the two-lap race.
This year, Rudisha was fourth in his lone Diamond League race in May. He ranks No. 19 in the world in 2017, while countryman Emmanuel Korir and Botswana’s Nijel Amos have the combined five fastest times among athletes entered in worlds.
Also absent from worlds are the men who joined Rudisha on the Rio podium — Algerian Taoufik Makhloufi and American Clayton Murphy, who both also suffered injuries this year.
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Lindsey Vonn’s top rival for downhill gold is in danger of missing the upcoming Olympics.
Ilka Stuhec, a world champion Alpine skier from Slovenia, suffered a torn ACL after a practice crash in Austria this weekend.
Stuhec had become a strong medal favorite for PyeongChang after winning FIS World Cup titles in downhill and Alpine combined last season. She also won a gold medal in downhill at the 2017 World Championships, where Vonn placed third.
According to a post on the FIS website, surgery is set for this Wednesday, with more information to come after that. But preliminary reports suggest that she is likely to miss the Olympics.
“For now it looks like Ilka Stuhec will have to miss a large part or maybe the whole World Cup season, including the Winter Olympic Games in South Korea,” a spokesperson for Struhec told Reuters.
In a tweet, Struhec acknowledged that she would be sidelined “for a few months.”
The Olympics start in less than four months.
Mikey Lillis, a 17-year-old aerials skier, died in his sleep at his home in East Rochester, N.Y., overnight Saturday, according to U.S. Ski & Snowboard.
“We are a family, and as a family our entire team grieves for Mikey, his own family and his teammates,” U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw said in a statement. “We’ll remember him for the pathway he was following and the goals he was beginning to achieve. Our condolences go out to his parents Bernie and Jamie and the entire Lillis family.”
Lillis was working his way to join his two older brothers at the elite international level. He made three podiums on the Nor-Am Cup tour between the last two seasons.
Jon Lillis, 23, is the reigning world champion in aerials. Chris Lillis, 19, won the FIS Rookie of the Year award last season with four top-10 finishes on the World Cup.