Isaac Makwala is ‘fit, very well and prepared to run’ in tonight’s 400m final but has been locked out of London Stadium by the IAAF.
The Botswana athlete was diagnosed with a stomach illness but felt ready to compete against Wayne Van Niekerk in the final race of the evening.
However, officials and medical staff from the Botswana team are claiming a breakdown in communication with the IAAF and disputing how Makwala was ruled out of the championship event.
Around 30 people have been affected by a norovirus, including a number of athletes competing in east London.
Despite withdrawing, Makwala insisted he was fit to race and attempted to enter the stadium via the athletes’ entrance, only to be stopped and taken to the governing body’s office.
The IAAF had earlier said: “Isaac Makwala (BOT) was withdrawn from the men’s 400m (final) due to a medical condition on the instruction of the IAAF medical delegate.”
Earlier on Tuesday, Makwala had told the BBC that he was ready for the race.
“I was not that sick,” he said. “I just vomited. Like any other athlete, I vomit… I could have run because I did my warm-up well and I did everything well. I was ready to run.
“They say they are waiting for the medical results but I don’t know because they didn’t test me. I don’t know what, which medical results they are waiting for.
“This is bad. I felt heartbroken yesterday. I was ready for this, I worked hard for this. So I feel like sabotaging or something … I don’t know because I don’t have the full information about this.”
And now Falcon Sedimo, chief executive of the Botswana National Sports Commission, has slammed the IAAF for not being open about their decision.
“For us, the important thing is that there should have been formal communication from the IAAF,” Semido said.
“There has been none. We only had benefit from the media relating to Makwala’s not being allowed to compete which left us heart-broken.
He’s been waiting for years to see himself here.
“He definitely was a gold medal contender, not only in the 200 but we believe he was going to be in the 400m as well.”
Makwala was taken back to the team hotel after being denied entry to the stadium although Semido said he was ready to race if the Botswanan delegation were able to convince the IAAF to reverse their decision ahead of the 9.50pm 400m final.
However, an email sent to the Botswanan team on Tuesday evening claimed the competition organisers had conducted a medical examination yesterday – but without his own medical staff present.
Makwala’s medical representative at the championships Simon O’Brien meanwhile claimed the athlete was “fit and well but being kept away” by the authorities.