Comebacks are on tap in the first Diamond League meet of the Olympic season in Doha on Friday.
South African Caster Semenya, the 2012 Olympic 800m silver medalist, is set for her first Diamond League race since 2014.
American Walter Dix, the 2008 Olympic 100m and 200m bronze medalist, has been absent from the Diamond League since 2013.
And France’s Teddy Tamgho, the 2013 World triple jump champion, is slated to return to Doha after rupturing an Achilles tendon at the Qatar capital last year.
Those are some of the bigger storylines in a meet that lacks Usain Bolt, Justin Gatlin, Allyson Felix and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.
Start lists are available here. Here’s the schedule (all times Eastern):
10:45 a.m. — Women’s pole vault
10:45 — Women’s shot put
11:10 — Women’s triple jump
11:30 — Men’s discus
12 p.m. — Men’s high jump
12:04 p.m. — Men’s 400m
12:15 — Women’s 100m
12:25 — Men’s 1500m
12:39 — Women’s 400m hurdles
12:50 — Men’s 3000m steeplechase
12:50 — Men’s triple jump
12:55 — Women’s javelin
1:09 — Men’s 200m
1:21 — Women’s 800m
1:34 — Men’s 110m hurdles
1:45 — Women’s 3000m
Here are five events to watch:
Women’s 100m — 12:15 p.m. ET
The field is without the Olympic and World champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica but does include the second-through-fourth-place finishers from Worlds.
That’s, in order, the Netherlands’ Dafne Schippers, American Tori Bowie and Jamaican Veronica Campbell-Brown.
Schippers and Bowie earned their first World sprint medals last year, while Campbell-Brown is a seven-time Olympic medalist.
Men’s Triple Jump — 12:50 p.m. ET
The last two World champions face off.
American Christian Taylor won the 2015 World crown with the second-best triple jump in history.
Teddy Tamgho of France, the 2013 World champ, was unable to challenge Taylor at Worlds in Beijing after rupturing an Achilles tendon in Doha last year.
Men’s 200m — 1:09 p.m. ET
A men’s sprint including neither Usain Bolt nor Justin Gatlin is usually not noteworthy. This race is intriguing if only for the presence of Walter Dix, the 2008 Olympic 100m and 200m bronze medalist set for his first Diamond League race since 2013.
Dix, also the 2011 World 100m and 200m silver medalist, has barely been heard from since failing to make the 2012 Olympic team. He was slowed by a left hamstring injury in 2012 and 2013.
In the 100m, he has broken 10 seconds once in 32 tries since April 21, 2012, according to Tilastopaja.org. But last month he clocked his fastest 100m and 200m times since 2013.
In Doha, he will face a field that includes Isiah Young and Ameer Webb, two of the four fastest U.S. men in the 200m since the London Olympics.
Women’s 800m — 1:21 p.m. ET
South African Caster Semenya is back in the spotlight after clocking the then-fastest 400m and 800m times this year within an hour of each other on April 16.
The 400m time was surpassed later that day, but it was still a personal best for Semenya, best known for a gender-testing controversy in 2009 and 2010.
Semenya, who failed to qualify for the 2013 Worlds and failed to make the 2015 World 800m final, is set for her first Diamond League race since 2014. She’ll notch her first Diamond League win since 2011 if she can beat a field that includes Kenyan Eunice Sum, the fastest in the world in 2015.
Men’s 110m Hurdles — 1:34 p.m. ET
Olympic champion and world-record holder Aries Merritt continues his comeback from a Sept. 1 kidney transplant (and a reported second emergency surgery in late October).
Merritt, who earned 2015 World bronze with kidney function at less than 20 percent, is slated to face a Doha field that includes 2013 World champion David Oliver and Jamaican Omar McLeod, who ran the world’s second-fastest time in 2015.
McLeod beat Oliver and Merritt at the Drake Relays on Saturday.
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