'Tough to see': Aussie athlete's Olympics come to devastating end

Genevieve Gregson is helped into a wheelchair by officials after falling during the steeplechase at the Tokyo Olympics.
Australia's Genevieve Gregson had to be helped from the steeplechase course in a wheelchair after a devastating fall in the dying stages of the final at the Tokyo Olympics. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

Australian competitor Genevieve Gregson has been taken from the athletics arena in a wheelchair after falling in the dying stages of the 3000m steeplechase final.

It a heartbreaking scene at the end of the notoriously gruelling event, Gregson appeared to land awkwardly after clearing a water obstacle.

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After crashing to the ground, she grabbed at her calf and ankle before she was helped from the course by officials, via wheelchair.

It was later revealed that the three-time Olympian had ruptured her achilles.

Gregson had earned her place in the final after placing sixth in her heat earlier in the week.

The 32-year-old was devastated not to have finished the final under her own power, while fans flocked to social media to offer support after the brutal turn of events.

The race also happened to fall on Gregson's birthday, adding another cruel twist to her Olympic fate.

“A lot of the time when that heat and humidity gets into your body you get quite a few calf cramping injuries from it,” Channel 7's Bruce McAvaney said in commentary.

As Gregson hit trouble, Uganda's Peruth Chemutai claimed the gold medal in a time of 9:01.45.

She finished ahead of USA entrant Courtney Frerichs and Kenya's Hyvin Kiyeng, who were separated by less than a second as they crossed the finish line.

Aussie stars Hull, Hall through to women's 1500m final

Jessica Hull and Linden Hall have produced brilliant semi-final runs to ensure that Australia will be the only country with two representatives in the Olympic women's 1500m final in Tokyo.

Hull, 24, was the first to make her mark on Wednesday evening, finishing fourth in the opening semi in a slick three minutes 58.81 seconds, breaking Hall's national record in the process.

"My last 100 wasn't pretty but I put myself in it for 1400 metres and I came away with the big Q (automatic qualifier) and I'm so stoked to be going through to the final," the US-based Hull told the Seven Network.

Not to be outdone, her great domestic rival Hall ran bravely from the front in the second semi before crossing the line third in 4:01.37.

"I probably didn't plan on taking the lead quite as early as I did but you've got to just adapt on the fly and it worked out," said the 30-year-old Hall, who just missed out on a spot in the 1500m final five years ago on her Olympic debut in Rio.

"I was just trying to stay in that top five. My motto was 'top five and stay alive'.

"I pulled that off so I'm pretty happy."

Hull and Hall will be joined in the final by Dutch superstar Sifan Hassan, who is chasing an unprecedented 1500-5000-10,000m treble in Tokyo.

Hassan won the second semi in 4:00.23, but Kenyan Faith Kipyegon was fastest overall in 3:56.80.

The only other Australian women to have qualified for an Olympic 1500m final were Jenny Orr in 1972 and Marg Crowley in 1996.

With AAP

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