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Rio 2016: Agonising fourth place for Gemili

PUBLISHED: 07:04 19 August 2016 | UPDATED: 07:04 19 August 2016

Team GB's Adam Gemili (far right) in the Olympic 200m final with, from left, France's Christophe Lemaitre, Jamaica's Usain Bolt, USA's Lashawn Merritt, Canada's Andre Degrasse and Panama's Alonso Edward (pic: Martin Rickett/PA)

Team GB's Adam Gemili (far right) in the Olympic 200m final with, from left, France's Christophe Lemaitre, Jamaica's Usain Bolt, USA's Lashawn Merritt, Canada's Andre Degrasse and Panama's Alonso Edward (pic: Martin Rickett/PA)

PA/Press Association Images

Sprinter misses 200m bronze by 0.001sec

Great Britain's Adam Gemili appears dejected after finishing fourth in the 200m final at the Olympic Stadium (pic: Martin Rickett/PA)Great Britain's Adam Gemili appears dejected after finishing fourth in the 200m final at the Olympic Stadium (pic: Martin Rickett/PA)

Adam Gemili missed out on bronze in the men’s Olympic 200m final by just one-thousandth of a second in Rio last night.

The 22-year-old University of East London graduate produced a strong second half to the race to finish in 20.12secs, but a photo finish confirmed bronze for France’s Christophe Lemaitre, who had clocked the same time.

The final, won by the unstoppable Usain Bolt for his eighth Olympic title, couldn’t have been closer, with fifth-placed Churandy Martina of the Netherlands finishing fifth in 20.13.

“I am really gutted. It is probably the worst way to go out when you finish in fourth,” said Gemili.

“I knew it was me and a couple of other people who could get it but I saw his name come up and I just fell to the floor.

“It went down to one thousandth of a second, which is hard to take. I gave it so much and I know I can run faster but is not about the times, it is about medals.

“I wanted to get that medal not just for myself but for my whole team so I gave it my all.”

Gemili was close to signing a contract at Dagenham & Redbridge at the age of 18, before deciding to quit football and pursue a career in athletics, and reached the semi-finals of the 100m at the London 2012 Games.

And he will return to the track in Rio with the 4x100m relay squad, which also includes Newham & Essex Beagles duo James Ellington and Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake, and has a good chance of adding to Team GB’s outstanding medal tally.

He added: “I thought it was close. I knew I was in the mix but it is hard to tell.

“Christophe Lemaitre was on the other side of the track so I couldn’t tell what happened.

“I went out there and I was fearless. I wasn’t just there to make up the numbers and be a spectator.

“I was there to show that Team GB can challenge the best in the world, especially at the Olympics.

“I didn’t quite do it which is hard to take but I will be ready to go in the relay and I know we can definitely take a medal there so we will be fully up for it.”

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