How they do it...
SELECTION for the Olympic track and field team should be a fairly simple affair.
If an athlete holding a current A standard time finished in the top two at UK trials, held in Birmingham last month, they were guaranteed a place at the London Games.
That was enough for pole vaulters Steve Lewis, from Light Oaks, and Kate Dennison, from Alsager, to book their slots.
However, it quickly became complicated in the women's 800m.
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Only Emma Jackson, from Newcastle, and Marilyn Okoro have run the current A standard 1:59.90. Jenny Meadows and Jemma Simpson both held A standard times from last year.
Okoro made a wild mistake with her tactics at the trials, sprinting ahead early on but then seeing her lead wiped out as she tired to finish in fifth.
Jackson had cracked a rib the previous week and, running with strapping and on painkillers, could only manage seventh.
Lynsey Sharp took victory in a B standard time of 2:01.72, with Simpson (2:02.29) second.
Either could have still booked an automatic Olympic Games slot if they had run an A standard before the July 1 deadline, but neither went close.
Sharp claimed a silver medal in a depleted field at the European Championship at Helsinki in 2:00.52, still well short of the time required.
It meant the decision was left in the hands of a UK Athletics selection panel which met on Monday, overseen by head coach Charles van Commenee.
The committee could have taken up to three athletes who had run A standard times since May 1 last year.
Alternatively, international rules state a country can select just one athlete who has run a B time – on the condition no A standard athletes is entered in the same discipline.
The policy is supposedly in place to provide back-up athletes in case of a shortage of elite contenders.
Yet van Commenee believes Sharp is best suited to taking on the world next month.
He said: "It was never our intention to select the biggest possible team, we want the strongest possible. The panel is convinced Lynsey has the best chance at the Games."
Ashleigh Nelson, from Birches Head, won the 100m at trials but has not been chosen for the Olympics. In a complete about-turn compared to their 800m ruling, selectors opted for two sprinters with the A standard, Abi Oyepitan and Anyika Onuora.