Algeria

Katie Ledecky beats swimmer by 97 seconds (video)

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Katie Ledecky has never waited this long for a race to end at a major international meet.

Ledecky not only crushed the field in the 1500m freestyle heats at the world championships — winning by 17 seconds — but she also had to wait 97 seconds for the last woman to touch the wall.

Watch as Ledecky hits the 1400-meter mark — signified by a bell ringer at her lane (1:15 mark). Then, she finished the grueling 1500m with another bell ringing. That’s because a swimmer in another lane hit 1400 meters as Ledecky finished.

But that’s not all. Yet another swimmer, Algerian Souad Nefissa Cherouati, lagged even more in lane 9. Her bell rang another 18 seconds later, and then she needed another 70 seconds to complete her last lap.

Ledecky’s time of 15:47.54, was the ninth-fastest of her career and 22 seconds off her world record. Still, it’s 13 seconds faster than any other woman has swum this year.

Ledecky is a huge favorite in the final on Tuesday.

Here are the longest times between the finishes of Ledecky and last-place finishers in her major international meet career:

2012 Olympics — 18 seconds (800m freestyle heats)
2013 Worlds — 84 seconds (1500m freestyle heats)
2014 Pan Pacific Champs — 76 seconds (1500m freestyle heats)
2015 Worlds — 82 seconds (1500m freestyle heats)
2016 Olympics — 22 seconds (800m freestyle final)
2017 Worlds — 97 seconds (1500m freestyle heats)

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Olympic 1500m champion to miss world championships

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Algerian Taoufik Makhloufi, who took 1500m gold and silver at the last two Olympics, will reportedly miss the world track and field championships next month due to a calf injury.

Makhloufi, who last competed in September, issued a statement Monday that he will not race in London in August, according to the Algeria Press Service.

Makhloufi, 29, was the surprise 2012 Olympic 1500m champion after failing to make it out of the semifinals at the 2009 and 2011 Worlds. He was earlier briefly disqualified from the London Games for not giving a “bona fide effort” by pulling out of his 800m first-round heat after the first lap.

In Rio, Makhloufi became the first man to earn medals in the 800m and 1500m (both silver) at one Olympics since Seb Coe in 1984.

Makhloufi’s absence will boost the hopes of Rio 1500m gold medalist Matthew Centrowitz to bag his first world title in London.

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Honduras’ Lozano stars in Olympic-opening win over Algeria

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First half goals from Romell Quioto, Anthony Lozano and Marcelo Pereira led Honduras to an impressive opening Olympic win over Algeria at the Estádio Olímpico João Havelange in Rio de Janeiro on Thursday.

Sofiane Bendebka and Baghdad Bounedjah scored Algeria’s goal in the 3-2 loss.

Honduras move atop Group D for at least a few hours, with Portugal and Argentina set to kickoff at 5 p.m. EDT.

MORE: Highlights/match replay here

Honduras took advantage of a razor-thin onside run from Lozano, who then made an ankle-breaking cut in the box. His shot was saved, but Quioto would work the rebound over the line to make it 1-0 in the 13th minute.

An unlikely goal in many ways came next, as defender Pereira then headed a ball from the edge of the 18 that looped over Farid Chaal, who was only starting because of a tournament-ending injury to Abdelkader Salhi.

Algeria woke up in the second half, though Honduras’ physical if foul happy style was a proper obstacle to the African side’s comeback.

The two combustible sides saw their tempers reach boiling points in the 56th minute, crowding around an injured player as the referee attempted to keep things sane.

Algeria nabbed a goal via a gutty header from Bendebka with more than 20 minutes to play, but Honduras pulled one back thanks to another error on Chaal. The Algerian keeper spilled an easy cross right onto the foot on Lozano, who simply loved the chance to score from the six.

Bounedjah made a cool chest trap on a 85th minute cross before passing the ball inside the right post as Algeria pulled within one.