Veronica Campbell and Lauryn Williams waited and waited on the track for a winner to be announced in the finals of the 100 meters.
Then again, it takes a while to calculate a time out to the thousandth of a second. Campbell was awarded the gold medal over Williams by three-one-thousandths of a second Monday night _ the margin announced officially on Tuesday.
Since the IAAF has provisions to read out that far, there was no thought of awarding a dual gold medal.
"It was close, but you can differentiate," said Paul Hardy, the IAAF events and competitions director.
The times of both Campbell and Hardy are listed at an identical 11.01 seconds.
All the sprinters stood around for almost 10 minutes, waiting for the time to be posted. At first, the stadium's screen flashed American Torri Edwards as the winner. However, when the results were officially posted, Edwards wound up fourth.
"Unfortunately, it was human error," Hardy explained of the mistake. "While the time read correctly, the lane was input incorrectly."
The closeness of Monday night's race was reminiscent of the 100 between Gail Devers and Merlene Ottey at the 1993 world championships in Stuttgart. Devers edged Ottey by one-one-thousandth of a second.
"That one was very, very close," Hardy said.
LONG NIGHT: The IAAF's jury of appeals had a busy night listening to protest arguments. The committee ended up disqualifying European champion Mehdi Baala of France in the 1,500 for obstructing Moroccan Youssef Baba as they jostled for position down the home stretch. Baba was given a place in the final.
"That was another interesting race and kept us here quite late," Hardy said. A French appeal against the disqualification was rejected.
SAGGING ATTENDANCE?: Hardy said the IAAF was not disappointed in the number of fans showing up for events.
However, he is hoping it will pick up.
"The organizing committee is still working hard throughout Osaka," Hardy said. "We are still getting a fairly decent walk-up crowd. Unfortunately, sometimes a gold medal by the host country is often the best promotion you can have."
Japanese hammer thrower Koji Murofushi, one of the country's best chances at a medal, finished sixth.
The television numbers have been holding steady. IAAF officials said the men's 100 meters final Sunday night drew a rating of 20. A typical television audience for a Japanese baseball game _ the most popular sport on TV _ is 10.
"We've had some pretty impressive figures so far," said Nick Davies, a spokesman for IAAF
UNDER THE WEATHER: About 50 employees of Japanese broadcaster TBS came down with suspected food poisoning on Monday at the world championships after eating boxed lunches provided by a local caterer, the Asahi newspaper reported.
Of the 50, 13 were taken to a hospital in Osaka. While food poisoning is rare in Japan, cases do rise in the summer months.
Temperatures at the worlds have soared to the mid-30s (Celsius) with high humidity.
STAR POWER: The future looks bright for the unstoppable Kenenisa Bekele.
Bekele earned his third straight world 10,000 title on Monday night, sprinting away from fellow Ethiopian Sileshi Sihine in the final stretch to win in 27 minutes, 5.90 seconds. Bekele also is entered in the 5,000. He is the world record holder in both events.
Bekele said Tuesday he has a lot on his plate for the next few years.
"I don't know how long I'll run," said Bekele. "I want more Olympic gold medals, I want more world championships, I want to improve my time in the 10,000."
Bekele, who won the 10,000 gold medal in Athens, said it's too early to talk about the marathon, but he would consider running in that event after two years.
When he's not winning medals on the track, the 25-year-old Ethiopian is staying busy by making a movie based on his life story.
"It's exciting," said Bekele. "I am doing the writing and some of the directing but am looking for someone to play me. It's not easy."
Bekele is well within reach of four consecutive 10,000 world title golds won by the legendary Haile Gebrselassie from 1993-1999.