Athletics-I'll quit long jump if rules changed - world champion Tentoglou

Athletics - World Athletics Indoor Championships - Commonwealth Arena, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain - March 2, 2024 Greece's Miltiadis Tentoglou in action during the men's long jump final REUTERS/Paul Childs

GLASGOW (Reuters) -Greek Miltiadis Tentoglou threatened to quit the long jump event shortly after winning the world indoor title on Saturday if the sport implements a rule change intended to eliminate foul jumps.

The amendment World Athletics is proposing involves introducing a take-off zone where jumps would be measured from an athlete's take-off to landing position, getting rid of foul jumps to make the event more appealing to fans.

"I consider long jump to be one of the hardest events because of the board and the accuracy you need," Tentoglou told reporters.

"You need to run like a sprinter, to hit the board perfectly -- this is the difficult part of the long jump. The jump itself is easy. The hard part is the run-up.

"So if they want to remove this, the long jump would be the easiest event," he added. "If that happens, I will not do long jump anymore. I will be a triple jumper."

The 25-year-old Tentoglou, also the reigning Olympic and world outdoor champion, and 19-year-old Italian Mattia Furlani both leapt 8.22 metres in Glasgow with the Greek taking gold on the tiebreak due to his longer second-best jump.

"It was very close. I hope everyone had some fun today, at least, it was exciting in the end," Tentoglou said.

Furlani, whose silver was his first global medal, flew to what looked to be the winning jump on his sixth and final attempt, but the red flag went up to signal a foul because he stepped past the take-off board.

Under the proposed rule amendment, he would probably have won the gold medal, but the Italian was not too disappointed.

"Wow, what a great day. I am so excited because it is the first steps for me on the world stage," he said. "I have got time now (in my career) to improve my speed and my power. But I am so excited to have done this."

Carey McLeod of Jamaica won bronze with 8.21 metres.

A third of all jumps at the 2023 world outdoor championships were no-jumps, prompting World Athletics to look at ways of changing the rules.

(Reporting by Lori Ewing, editing by Ed Osmond)

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