Clayton Murphy mocked for finishing last in men's 800 meters: 'Unbelievably dumb race'

Hopes were high as Clayton Murphy had advanced to the finals after finishing second during the semifinals


                            Clayton Murphy mocked for finishing last in men's 800 meters: 'Unbelievably dumb race'
Clayton Murphy (2L) of Team United States competes in the Men's 800-meter Semi-Final on day nine of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Fans were disappointed after Clayton Murphy finished last in the men's 800m finals at the Tokyo Olympics. Emmanuel Kipkurui Korir of Kenya won gold, Ferguson Cheruiyot Rotich, also from Kenya, took home the silver, while Patryk Dobek from Poland claimed bronze.

Hopes were high as the 26-year-old Murphy of New Paris, Ohio, had advanced to the finals after finishing second during the semifinals clocking an impressive 1:44.18, behind Peter Bol of Australia, who ran with a time of 1:44.11. Murphy, who lives in Northeast Ohio and trains at Beachwood High School, had previously won bronze in the same event at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

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“There was just nine guys fighting for one spot,” Murphy commented after the race. “I got shuffled back and then just left it too late," he added.

Clayton Murphy of Team United States competes in the Men's 800 meter Semi-Final on day nine of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 01, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Olympics fans supporting Team USA appeared disappointed, albeit some empathized with the track star. "American misery persists in 800 meters. Clayton Murphy was last in the #Tokyo2020 final. His bronze in 2016 is the only USA medal in this event over the past seven Olympics (since Atlanta 1996). Donovan Brazier, the 2019 world champ, did not make the USA team," Sports reporter David Woods tweeted.

"Olympic track real estate is never more valuable than in the 800 meters. Clayton Murphy could never find a good position and wound up last tonight," Sportswriter Jonathan Gault added. "University of Akron grad, Clayton Murphy falls short of getting back to the podium in the men’s 800m final. The bronze medal winner from Rio was boxed in midway through the race and never recovered. #Olympics," Journalist Will Ujek wrote.

"Unbelievably dumb race by Clayton Murphy there," one Twitter user commented. "For all the pushing and shoving Clayton Murphy did in the final, one would think he’d finish in a better than last place," another added. "Clayton Murphy hanging at the back of the pack in a 55-second first lap was unconscionable," a comment read.



 



 



 



 



 



 

Murphy was determined to make a podium finish at the Olympics this time after having secured bronze at the last games. “I really am worried about myself and what I can do. As long as I’m in the best shape that I can be in, the healthiest I can be, and as mentally confident in myself as possible, I think the sky’s the limit," Murphy told Spectrum News after his 2016 win. The native of New Madison in western Ohio is a graduate of the University of Akron, where he was a 13-time Mid-American Conference champion.

Murphy moved from Portland, Oregon to Pepper Pike in northeast Ohio with his wife Ariana Washington in 2015. “She’s been a great wife and partner and will be forever I’m sure," he said at the time. It's worth noting that Washington too is a track and field Olympian and the pair met at the Rio games. “We met in the athlete lounge playing Uno," Murphy told Spectrum News. "It’s also nice to have someone who understands what this sport takes. So, when I go home, 90% of our life has nothing to do with this.”

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