Call it the curse of the world record holders.
One day after Usain Bolt was disqualified in the 100 meters at the world championships because of a false start, Cuba'a Dayron Robles, the world record holder in the 110 meter hurdles, had his gold medal taken away after officials determined he illegally bumped into Chinese track hero Liu Xiang late in the race.
The disqualification enabled American Jason Richardson to go from the silver medal to gold. Xiang, who finished third in the original race, was awarded the silver.
Robles knocked arms with Xiang twice in the final 20 meters of the race, pushing the Chinese star off his stride and into the final hurdle. He was disqualified because it was determined he impeded Xiang's path to the finish line.
Watch the race below courtesy our friends at Universal Sports. If you're in a rush, watch the race at the start, then jump ahead to the 2:12 mark for the replays:
Though the video condenses the disqualification into a four-minute clip, it took over an hour for China to lodge the protest, the IAAF to review the tape and the ruling to come down. The Cubans immediately protested that ruling.
Monday night's race was the most anticipated of the world championships. It featured the three fastest hurdlers in history: Robles, the current world record holder and 2008 Olympic champion; Xiang, the Chinese star who won the race in Athens but was forced to withdraw from Beijing with an injury; and American David Oliver, the world's fastest hurdler over the past two years.
Oliver finished fifth.
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- Liu Xiang
- Dayron Robles