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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 August, 2003, 03:09 GMT 04:09 UK
Edwards makes sad exit
Jonathan Edwards
Edwards felt he could not be as competitive as he wanted to be
Jonathan Edwards finished his triple jump career in disappointing style by retiring from the world championship final after just two attempts.

But the 37-year-old Briton, who relinquished his crown to Sweden's Christian Olsson, refused to blame his recent ankle injury for his premature exit.

"My ankle is fine - I just had nothing left in me," said Edwards.

"I said on Friday that I wanted to go out with dignity, not on a stretcher. I may have eked out 16.80m and made the cut, but I've had my time.

"Going out after two rounds was the right thing to do because I was not competitive."

Edwards sought permission from wife Alison before eventually bringing the curtain down on his glittering career.

"After two rounds I looked across at Alison and she had this beaming grin on her face, which is amazing for her because normally she is really nervous," said Edwards.

"I saw that and thought there was no point doing a third jump to try and make the cut, there was nothing to be gained.

I hoped there might have been a fairytale ending but it wasn't to be
Jonathan Edwards

"I went over and asked her if she was happy for me to stop now and she was taken aback, but I felt it was the right thing to do and she agreed.

Edwards began with a foul and could only manage 16.31m - two metres below his world record - with his second attempt.

He then decided against a third effort and ended his illustrious career watching Olsson win with a leap of 17.72m.

Olsson finished well clear of Cuba's Yolandri Betanzos, who had a best of 17.28m, and Leevan Sands of the Bahamas.

"It feels like a dream come true. It's the best thing that has ever happened," said Olsson.


Triple jump result:

1. Christian Olsson (Swe) 17.72m
2. Yoandri Betanzos (Cub) 17.28m
3. Leevan Sands (Bah) 17.26m
4. David Giralt (Cub) 17.23m
5. Jadel Gregorio (Bra) 17.11m
6. Kenta Bell (USA) 17.08m
7. Hrístos Meletoglou (Gre) 16.92m
8. Andrew Owusu (Gha) 16.86m
9. Yoelvis Quesada (Cub) 16.84m
10. Ivaylo Rusenov (Bul) 16.66m





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Britain's Jonathan Edwards
"I've had my time and it's been great"



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