Olympic bronze medallist David Oliver has withdrawn from this weekend's U.S. indoor championships because of problems with his left calf, the year's fastest hurdler said on Friday.
"It just tightened up on me in the middle of the race in Karlsruhe, Germany (on Feb. 13) and the doctor suggested I take a few days off because scar tissue was pulling so tight on my calf," Oliver told Reuters in a telephone interview from his Kissimmee, Florida, training base.
His coach, Brooks Johnson, still entered Oliver in the U.S. meeting scheduled for Saturday and Sunday in Albuquerque, New Mexico, but recently decided the hurdler should not compete.
"It's nothing serious," said Oliver. "I am back at practice after taking last week off. I just didn't want to take any chances by running any more indoor meets."
The U.S. record holder in the outdoor 110 metres hurdles, Oliver tore his left calf muscle in 2009.
"In the course of normal competition this winter and not getting enough therapy while I was in Europe, I wasn't able to keep the scar tissue from tightening up on me," he said.
Before the problem, Oliver had enjoyed his most successful season in the 60 metres hurdles, going undefeated in three indoor races to add to his win streak of 15 consecutive 110 metres hurdles victories outdoors last year.
"I passed my previous indoor best three times this season," the 2010 world indoor bronze medallist said.
The highlight came Feb. 5 in Stuttgart, Germany, when Oliver clocked 7.37 seconds to equal the ninth fastest 60 metres hurdles of all-time.
No other hurdler has dipped under 7.46 seconds this year. Briton Colin Jackson set the world record of 7.30 seconds in 1994.
Consistency with his start has prompted Oliver's breakthrough times, he said.
"Now that I have solidified that, I have become kind of a complete hurdler," Oliver said. "I added the final piece with my start."
The improvement should also pay off outdoors, where Oliver is just two-hundredths of a second off Cuban Dayron Robles' 110 metres hurdles world record of 12.87 seconds.
"Everyone knows I am a beast outdoors," said the Olympian.