Diamond League changes controversial 'final three' format

The Diamond League General Assembly which met in Rome decided that best throw or jump from the entire competition will take the title

The men's long jump at the 2020 Stockholm Diamond League, where Sweden's Montler Thobias had the lead after five rounds with 8.13m but saw South African Samaai Ruswahl taking the gold with a last round 8.09m - a classic case of the controversial rule that was repealed on Thursday.

It had received a massive thumbs down from many athletes and had caused much confusion and controversy. The Diamond League General Assembly, which met in Rome, has now changed the 'final three' format for the 2022 Diamond League, virtually the world series in athletics, which will see the best throw or jump from the entire competition winning the event.

The old format did not consider marks achieved in the previous five attempts in the horizontal jumps and throws, with the top three athletes going into a fresh competition – the winner-takes-all last round – to pick the champion.

The men's long jump at the 2020 Stockholm Diamond League, where Sweden's Montler Thobias had the lead after five rounds with 8.13m but saw South African Samaai Ruswahl taking the gold with a last round 8.09m, is a classic case.

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“I'm happy with my four times over 8m, but I'm not so happy with the competition system!,” Thobias had said after the event.

The new format, which was approved following consultations with athletes, coaches, broadcasters and meet organisers, will see the best throw or jump from the entire competition, not just the final three, win the event with the silver going to the next best performance.

And to bring in additional excitement into the competition, the ‘best’ performing athletes will compete at the start of each round, not at the end.

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