By Brian Homewood
DOHA (Reuters) – European champion Filip Ingebrigtsen’s luck ran out on Friday when he missed out on the world championship final 1,500 metres final, one day after escaping sanction despite appearing to punch another runner in a heat.
The Norwegian, who won a world championship bronze in the event in London two years ago, finished seventh in the semi-final first heat, too slow to make Sunday’s final as one of the fastest losers.
Ingebrigtsen was involved in controversy during Thursday’s first heat when he appeared to punch Ethiopian Teddese Lemi in the back as the runners jostled for position at the bell. Lemi went crashing to the ground, was trampled upon and finished 11th in the heat.
No action was taken against Ingebrigtsen, surprising many observers.
Kenyan Timothy Cheruiyot, the firm favourite for the title, comfortably won the heat and was followed in second place by Algeria’s 2012 Olympic champion Taoufik Makhloufi. Britain’s Neil Gourley was also among the automatic qualifiers, finishing third.
Ingebrigtsen’s younger brother Jakob also made the final, finishing third in the second heat which was won by Polish record holder Marcin Lewandowski with Kenya’s Ronald Kwemoi qualifying in second.
Olympic champion Matt Centrowitz of the United States scraped through as one of the two fastest losers after finishing seventh in the second heat.
(Editing by Ed Osmond)