MOSCOW, Russia--Jeremy Taiwo (left/photo by Paul Merca) appeared to be on his way to a solid meet, especially after setting a personal best in the long jump on the first day of the decathlon.
But it wasn't to be.
Taiwo surprisingly did not start the high jump, the fourth event, and the event in which he briefly held the world heptathlon event record in.
The long collegiate season may have caught up with the Newport HS and University of Washington graduate apparently hurt himself on his second attempt, in which he jumped 24-0 1/2 (7.32m) after scoring a personal best of 24-8 1/2 (7.53m) in round one.
After the second jump, Taiwo passed his attempt due to pain on the inside of his left knee, and the jump held up for the victory in his group.
Taiwo started the day by running 10.96 to take second in his heat, scoring 870 points.
In the shot put, he threw 42-7 1/2 (12.99m) to score 667 points.
"My knee started bothering me to inside of my left knee during the long jump, so then I rested and didn’t take my last jump. After the break I came back to the high jump and when I took my first practice jump, I didn’t even get off the ground. I just felt like I didn’t have anything in my leg," said Taiwo in quotes gathered by USA Track & Field.
"Walking over to my coach (Atanas Atanassov) I realized that it hurt really badly on the outside of my knee and it was really unstable. I tried to jog on it and it kept giving out and the pain got worse. So I went in to the medical staff and that’s all."
"I feel like my next world championships is going to be fine. I got out here and felt relaxed, like it was just another meet. I ran fast, I had a good long jump, and I was excited to have a really good meet. I guess my body wasn’t ready for the whole thing.”
paulmerca.blogspot.com talked to both Taiwo and Atanassov afterwards, and they stated that Taiwo initially hurt the knee at the Pac-12 decathlon in May in Los Angeles, and tried to manage the injury by not high jumping as much in training, and by working with the medical staff at the UW athletic department. Taiwo said that he hopes to get an MRI on the knee here in Moscow.
NOTE: USA Track & Field contributed to this report.