London, (AFP) – Algerian medal contender Taoufik Makhloufi has been thrown out of the London Olympics for the unusual offence of not trying hard enough in his 800m heat on Monday, an IAAF statement said.
Makhloufi, who had already qualified for Tuesday’s 1500m final by winning his semi-final, ran in heat five of the first round of the 800m on Monday morning but failed to finish.
“Makhloufi (bib number 1008) did not finish the race,” the statement said.
“The referee considered that he had not provided a bona fide effort and decided to exclude him from participation in all further events in the competition under Rule 142.4.”
The move comes after eight badminton players were disqualified from the Olympics last week after a scandal over “throwing” matches.
The IAAF also disqualified Kuwaiti athlete Mohammad Al-Azemi from the 800m event for obstruction. Al-Azemi crossed the finishing line in third place in heat one.
Polish runner Marcin Lewandowski will go through to the next round “considering that he was pushed by Al-Azemi and lost his pace,” another statement said.