Belgium decathlete Thomas van der Plaetsen forced to withdraw with serious leg injuries

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Belgium decathlete Thomas van der Plaetsen suffered serious injuries when he attempted the long jump on Wednesday at the Tokyo Olympics, forcing an early exit from competition in the decathlon's second event.

The 30-year-old's right leg appeared to buckle as he took off for his long jump attempt. He suffered a hamstring tendon tear, a knee contusion and a tear in the ligaments of the right foot, according to a statement from Team Belgium. He left the track in a wheelchair and will return to Belgium for further medical follow-up. He is expected to be out for several months, according to the Belgian Olympic and Interfederal Committee. 

Van der Plaetsen was in fourth place after the 100 meter hurdles, but will not compete in the remaining eight disciplines: Shot put, high jump, 400m, 110m hurdles, discus throw, pole vault, javelin throw and 1,500m.

Thomas Van der Plaetsen Belgium track and field thumb

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