WIDE OPEN CLASH FOR GLORY
DESPITE the absence of Isaac Makwala, who is set to concentrate on the 400m because of the timetable, and the injured pair of Wayde van Niekerk and Andre De Grasse, this is set to be a hot event, thanks in part to the ascendancy of South Africa, a nation poised to challenge Caribbean sprint dominance.
Clarence Munyai’s amazing 19.69 breakthrough at their national championships would appear to make him favourite, although the 20-year-old’s 0.41-second PB was achieved with the advantage of altitude. Anaso Jobodwana, the 2015 world bronze medallist and former South African recordholder at 19.87, has started his season solidly, including a 20.07 at sea level.
Hughes, fifth at the World Championships, will hope to challenge, too, while Richard Kilty is better suited to the shorter sprint and Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake withdrew earlier this year with injury.
Jamaica’s Rasheed Dwyer and Warren Weir, gold and silver medallists respectively in Glasgow 2014, will be ably assisted by 20.39 man Kenroy Anderson. Jereem Richards and Kyle Greaux head a strong Trinidad & Tobago line-up. Bahamas’ Steven Gardiner, a sub-44 runner at 400m, should improve on his PB of 20.66 in a rare attempt at this distance.
Canada’s Aaron Brown, Bahamas’ Teray Smith and Steven Gardiner and Zambia’s Sydney Siame could be in the mix for medals too.
Zharnel Hughes: English podium contender
Rasheed Dwyer: Jamaican threat