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Guliyev shocks world with 200 win

The Associated PressLONDON (AP) — It wasn’t Wayde van Niekerk and it wasn’t Isaac Makwala.

Instead, Ramil Guliyev of Turkey earned the upset of the world championships on Thursday when he matched Van Niekerk stride for stride and won the 200-meter title by lunging at the line just ahead of the favored South African.

Jereem Richards of Trinidad and Tobago took bronze, while Makwala faded down the stretch and finished sixth.

Guliyev, a little-known 27-year-old sprinter who transferred nationality from Azerbaijan six years ago, was not even among the top-10 performers this year before he stunned his rivals and the 60,000-sellout crowd at the Olympic Stadium, many of whom had come to see Van Niekerk and Makwala fight for gold.

Guliyev finished in 20.09 seconds, .02 seconds ahead of both Van Niekerk and Richards. The South African took silver by .001 seconds.

Guliyev held his hands over his mouth in sheer disbelief after the slow race.

“This is not a shock, but this does not feel real,” said Guliyev, whose best performance coming into the world championships was a silver medal at the European championships last year.

Van Niekerk can only be disappointed with gold and silver. He fell just short of getting the first 200-400 double at the world championships since Michael Johnson in 1995.

In the first 200-meter final without Usain Bolt since 2009, it was wide open from the start. Van Niekerk was slightly ahead coming off the bend but could not make his fluent stride count as Guliyev stuck with him all the way.

In another thrilling duel among the Americans, two-time Olympic champion Christian Taylor edged Will Claye in the triple jump at the world championships.

Taylor won his third world title with a leap of 17.68 meters 5 centimeters more than Claye. Speech

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