Hurt­ing Bolt rar­ing for some re­lay re­demp­tion

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - SPORTS -

LON­DON — Usain Bolt will run in the 4x100m re­lay heats for Ja­maica on Satur­day de­spite be­ing sore af­ter win­ning bronze in the 100m fi­nal on the week­end, he said on Mon­day.

Bolt usu­ally runs in the 200m in­di­vid­ual event but opted not to com­pete at that dis­tance in Lon­don, which is his last ma­jor cham­pi­onships be­fore he re­tires, and the 30-year-old there­fore has the scope to com­pete in the re­lay heats this time.

“We’ ll see. We haven’t done any ba­ton changes as yet with the guys, but I feel we are ready,” the 11-time world sprint cham­pion said of his team’s chances.

“I have talked to Ju­lian Forte (100m semi­fi­nal­ist) a lit­tle bit. I haven’t re­ally talked to the young­sters so we’ ll see when it comes to the ba­ton changes, but I’m al­ways ex­cited to run re­lays and see how the guys are pre­par­ing and what they’re ready to do.”

Yo­han Blake is the only other ex­pe­ri­enced mem­ber of Ja­maica’s sprint re­lay pool to have won medals at world cham­pi­onships or Olympics.

“Phys­i­cally I am al­right, there is a lit­tle bit of pain, but noth­ing a mas­sage can’t cure, I’m tak­ing it easy,” Bolt said of his con­di­tion two days af­ter fin­ish­ing third by equal­ing his sea­son’s best, 9.95sec, in the 100m fi­nal.

“A lit­tle bit dis­ap­pointed but such is life,” said the eight-time Olympic gold medal­ist of his bronze.

“I’ve done my best as al­ways; went out there and gave my all and I’m just happy to be here and look­ing for­ward to the 4x100,” added the 100m and 200m world record holder, who has helped Ja­maica win the past four world 4x100 ti­tles.

Ja­maica set the sprint re­lay world record of 36.84sec at the 2012 Olympics at Lon­don Sta­dium, while Bolt also has two Olympic 4x100 ti­tles.

A third gold, from the 2008 Games in Bei­jing, had to be re­turned to the In­ter­na­tional Olympic Com­mit­tee af­ter Bolt’s re­lay team­mate Nesta Carter was found guilty of dop­ing.

Carter has ap­pealed to the Court of Ar­bi­tra­tion for Sport ask­ing that the Ja­maican team be re­in­stated.

Mean­while, Bolt con­tin­ued to give credit to 100m gold medal­ist Justin Gatlin for his per­se­ver­ance amid a hos­tile at­mos­phere at Lon­don Sta­dium, where fans booed the 25-year-old Amer­i­can through­out the sprint com­pe­ti­tion.

Gatlin has served two sus­pen­sions for dop­ing.

“I’m just show­ing re­spect,” said Bolt. “We’ve been bat­tling for years and he fi­nally got one (gold); yes it’s at the end of my ca­reer but I have to show re­spect where re­spect is due,” added the Ja­maican, who in­sisted his legacy re­mains intact.

“If you work hard through­out your life, I al­ways say any­thing is pos­si­ble and I can imag­ine how long he (Gatlin) has dreamed of this mo­ment.

“I can’t be a sore loser; through­out my ca­reer I’ve dom­i­nated. I per­son­ally don’t think it (the bronze medal) has changed what I have done in any way,” Bolt said.

AP

Usain Bolt strikes his trade­mark pose af­ter fin­ish­ing third in Satur­day’s 100m fi­nal.

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