Defending Olympic 100m hurdles champion Sally Pearson will miss the 2016 Games with a hamstring injury, but Australia is sending another hurdler to Rio who will garner a lot of attention.
Michelle Jenneke became an internet sensation when a video of her dancing prior to the 100m hurdles final at the 2012 World Junior Championships went viral.
Since then, the 23-year-old has appeared in Sports Illustrated’s annual swimsuit issue and garnered a significant social media following. She has more than 300,000 Instagram followers; for reference, Pearson has more than 43,000 Instagram followers.
Jenneke is scheduled to make her Olympic debut on Tuesday at 10:05 a.m. ET in the first round of the women’s 100m hurdles (watch LIVE). Her season’s best, 12.93 seconds, ranks 55th in the world this year, making it unlikely that she would advance past the semifinals.
Nia Ali, Kristi Castlin and Brianna Rollins will represent the U.S. in the event. World record holder Keni Harrison did not make the U.S. team. A U.S athlete has won a medal in the event at every Olympics since 2000.