The stage was set in London for one, last burst of speed from Usain Bolt as he took to the track for the final time in what has been a career second-to-none. An 11-time World Champion, a gold medal in the 4x100m relay would have the perfect farewell for the legendary Jamaican, who has inspired people across the globe with his performances on the field and his behaviour off it.
However, what happened was something that will go down in history as one of the most tragic sporting incidents of all-time. Sometimes, the sporting gods choose to ignore what could be perfectly scripted swansongs and instead, replace them with instances of tragedy that seem really harsh and unfair.
In this article, we look at five instances when farewells of some of the greatest athletes in their respective sports went horribly, horribly wrong!
#1 Usain Bolt
After finishing with a bronze medal in his last 100m event race, the Jamaican all-time great would have wanted to bow out with a gold in the 4x100m relay at the World Championships. He was running the anchor leg and everything looked like it was going according to plan, as he received the baton with his team in third place and all over the world, fans waited with bated breath, waiting for him to pull out the giant, trademark strides and surge into the lead.
However, what transpired was truly heartbreaking and iconic at the same time. As he started his sprint, Bolt pulled up clutching his hamstring and while other runners sped past him, he fell to the track grimacing in pain. It was a 'DNF' for Bolt in his very last race and considering the feats he has achieved in the past decade, it is the most anticlimactic thing one can ever imagine.