World Championships: Justin Gatlin's agent defends sprinter

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Usain Bolt wins 100m gold at World Championships 2015
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Venue: Beijing National Stadium, China Dates: 22-30 August
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American sprinter Justin Gatlin is unfairly carrying the burden of all drugs cheats, according to his agent.

The 33-year-old, who has twice been banned for doping offences, finished behind Usain Bolt in the 100m at the World Championships in Beijing, China.

He was one of four men in the 100m final to have tested positive for banned substances during their careers.

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Greene 'can't stand sight' of Gatlin

"He shouldn't be the guy who takes all the brunt of all the criticism and condemnation," said Renaldo Nehemiah.

"He was the only one who threatened the throne of Usain Bolt and that couldn't happen in many people's minds."

The race between Bolt and Gatlin on Sunday had been billed as a battle for the soul of athletics in some quarters, particularly by those critical of allowing Gatlin to compete.

Gatlin has said he will not speak to British media outlets because of what he perceives as biased coverage towards him.

After winning the 100m and 200m world double at Helsinki 2005, the American then tested positive for testosterone in 2006. He served a four-year ban that had been twice reduced from a lifetime and eight years.

Drugs cheats in 100m final
Justin Gatlin - One-year ban (reduced from two years) for testing positive for amphetamines. Four-year ban (reduced from lifetime) for testing positive for testosterone
Mike Rodgers - Nine-month ban for testing positive for a banned stimulant in 2011
Asafa Powell - Six-month ban (reduced from 18 months) for testing positive for a banned stimulant in 2013
Tyson Gay - One-year ban for testing positive for a banned anabolic steroid in 2013

Nehemiah, a former 110m hurdler world record holder, told BBC Radio 5 live that the notion that Gatlin had not shown remorse for his misdemeanours was an "incorrect assertion".

And Nehemiah said he was "disappointed" that athletics' governing body, the IAAF, had not done more to stop Gatlin's vilification.

His first drugs ban in 2001 was reduced from two years to one after he proved the amphetamines he was taking were for an attention deficit disorder.

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"Justin Gatlin has done national tours of middle schools and high schools, telling them about the dangers of drugs and the decisions he made," he said.

"He has humbled himself for months and months. It was never widely reported so people don't believe he has made amends or apologised."

Gatlin and Bolt compete in the 200m semi-finals on Wednesday, with the final on Thursday.

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