Simbine spurs South Africa to World Relays victory

Simbine spurs South Africa to World Relays victory

Akani Simbine led South Africa's 4x100m quartet to a dramatic victory at the World Athletics Relays in Poland on Sunday.

Akani Simbine
Reg Caldecott/TuksSport

Simbine, a sub-10 second 100m runner, took over the baton three metres down on Brazil's Paulo Andre Camilo de Oliveira but snatched victory on the line by a hundredth of a second in a time of 38.71sec.

The race in Silesia, Poland, was so close that the Brazilians were celebrating before the South Africans were announced as winners. 

The Brazilians' disappointment was compounded when they were then disqualified for running out of their lane.

In an incident-filled race, Ghana were also disqualified and Italy were promoted to second place in a time of 39.21, with Japan third in 39.42.

In the women's race, a storming run on the back straight by two-time world 200m champion Dafne Schippers gave the Netherlands a huge lead coming into the final changeover but a disastrous exchange left lead-in runner Naomi Sedney trailing in behind Italy who won in 43.79.

The first eight finishers in this event in the 4x100m, 4x400m and mixed 4x400m events automatically qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, and the first ten finishers in the 4x100m and 4x400m, and first 12 in the mixed 4x400m relay will automatically qualify for the 2022 World Championships in Oregon.

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