The first day of the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials began on a disappointing note as Matthew Centrowitz, the former Oregon standout and 2016 Olympic gold medalist, withdrew from the 1,500 meters. Centrowitz, 34, was originally scheduled to compete in the opening heats on Friday evening alongside his former Ducks teammates Cooper Teare, Cole Hocker, Sam Prakel, John Gregorek, Matt Wisner, and Oregon junior Elliott Cook.

According to his agent, Ricky Simms, Centrowitz had suffered a hamstring injury just days before the Prefontaine Classic on May 25, which had forced him to pull out of that competition. Earlier, Centrowitz had announced that this would be his final competitive season.

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Centrowitz, who has represented the United States in three Olympic Games, achieved notable success by finishing fourth at the 2012 London Olympics and then making history in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 as the first American man in 108 years to win Olympic gold in the 1,500 meters. He narrowly missed out on qualifying for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, finishing second to Hocker at the trials.

Centrowitz’s absence from the trials marks a significant moment in American track and field, prompting reflection on his impressive career and enduring impact on the sport.