prevails in Olympic trials after injured Bolt withdraws
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[July 02, 2016]
By Kayon Raynor
KINGSTON (Reuters) - Yohan Blake won
Jamaica's menís 100 meters Olympic trials in 9.95 seconds on Friday
after world and Olympic champion Usain Bolt pulled out minutes
before the final with a hamstring injury.
Bolt handed in a medical exemption after aggravating in Friday's
semi-finals a right hamstring injury that he had sustained Thursday
Blake had to stave off a false start, which was wrongfully charged
to him by the team of starters, who took back the red card in favor
of a yellow card that was charged to the field.
Running in lane four, Blake held his nerve on the second time of
asking, beating Nickel Ashmeade (9.96s) to the line by one hundreds
of a second.
Newcomer Jevaughn Minzie, training partner of Bolt and Blake, ended
third in a personal best 10.02secs, while former world record holder
Asafa Powell was fourth in 10.03 seconds.
"God is alive. A lot of people didn't think I'd be back but watch
here, I am." an elated Blake said.
"It has been a struggle (batting back from hamstring injuries)...I
wanted to go faster but because of the tragedy that was going on at
the start I couldn't because I had to conserve and be cautious," the
2011 world champion told Reuters.
Bolt's withdrawal does not affect his participation in the Rio
Olympics, where he is expected to defend his 100 and 200 meter
Unlike the United States, where the first three finishers in the
trials win Olympic berths, Jamaica's selection policy allows medical
Bolt had clocked 10.04 seconds to win the first semi-final after a
poor start and was due to square off in the final against Blake.
Elaine Thompson stormed to women's 100 meter final win, clocking
10.70secs to equal two-time defending Olympic champion Shelly-Ann
Fraser-Pryce's national record while punching her ticket to Rio.
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Jevaughn Minzie, Usain Bolt, Senoj-Jay Givans and Dexter Lee in
action during men's 100m semi-final race. REUTERS/Gilbert Bellamy
Thompson was in destructive form after taking control of the final
after 30 meters to win ahead of Fraser-Pryce who clocked 10.93
Their training partner Christania Williams, 21, came third with a
career best 10.97 seconds.
"It's been a wonderful season from the start and coming to this
trials to make my first Olympic team with a personal best I can't
complain as you see I'm actually crying right now, " Thompson told
She also had words of encouragement for Fraser-Pryce, who has
struggled with a toe injury all year.
"I know Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce wasn't healthy and coming out year
you have to be tough and she was determined and came out and book
her spot to the Olympics," the world 200m silver medalist said.
(Editing by Andrew Both/Amlan Chakraborty)
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