James Dasaolu’s coming of age catapults Briton into big time

 

Alexander Stadium

James Dasaolu may have been back at home with his feet up perusing tweets from the great and good of global sprinting but he remained the talking point for a second successive day at the Sainsbury’s British Championships.

A day previously, Britain’s second fastest man of all time went from a relative unknown to become one of the fastest sprinters in the world in the space of just 9.91 seconds over 100m.

It led to Twitter plaudits from former Olympic champion Donovan Bailey who wrote “congrats kid u got a lot left in the tank”.

There is a bubbling sense of excitement that Dasaolu can go faster yet. His semi-final sprint, after which he pulled out of the final with cramp, looked technically excellent but a twist of the head on the line arguably cost a tenth or two while he and coach Steve Fudge believe he can go quicker still.

Former British Olympic gold medallist Darren Campbell tipped Dasaolu to drop to the 9.8 sec mark and said it was realistic for him to have aspirations of challenging the American-Jamaican hegemony.

“He’s just run 9.91 seconds – that really does put him at the top table in the world,” he said. “That will strike fear into the top sprinters. Trust me, when you run that kind of time they do start to worry about you. If he is able to stay healthy for the World Champ-ionships, he could get a medal.”

At 25, Dasaolu took up the sport seriously only when he began a leisure management degree at Loughborough University, where he is still based, as an 18-year-old.

London-born Dasaolu, the son of Nigerian parents, finished some way off the pace of Usain Bolt in the pair’s Olympic heat last year, but can now have aspirations to at least keep pace with the fastest man on the planet.

While Dasaolu’s blistering running was the stand-out performance of the three days of the national championships, which also double as the Worlds trials, the strong runs of Dwain Chambers, who won the 100m when Dasaolu pulled out with cramp, and runner-up Harry Aikines-Aryeetey, who along with Chambers clocked the A qualifying standard, leave British sprinting in a rosier place that it has been for some time. With Adam Gemili crowned European Under-23 champion over the distance last week and Joel Fearon also with the A standard from earlier in the season, it gives the UK Athletics selection panel plenty to talk about when they meet today.

UKA performance director Neil Black, who ruled out a run-off, said: “It is the first time we have a choice on who we take to the World Champion-ships. It’s incredible for James and it was one of a series of really fast runs.

“We’re incredibly happy for him and backed up by Harry, Mark [Lewis-Francis]and Adam, sprinting is in a great place. It’s for the selectors to select and that’s what we’re there for. We’re constantly in contact with the athletes and coaches and we’re fully updated to take that into Monday’s selection meeting.”

n Perri Shakes-Drayton spent last night at the scene of her biggest career disappointment. But the new British champion did so with a smile on her face, hot-footing it to the Olympic Park fresh from her 400m hurdles win in Birmingham to watch Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake in concert.

Her 14th win over British rival Eilidh Child marks her out as a serious medal contender at the World Championships, but she will not be complacent. “I won the Diamond League in Crystal Palace a year ago but I didn’t manage what I was capable of at the Olympics so it shows anything can happen,” she said. “But I’d be happy with a medal. In the past, I never even made the final so I need to make the final first.”

Life and Style
food + drink
Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
News
UK Border Control
i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Operations Manager / Section Manager - Airport Security

£40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a critical role within the secur...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £45-55k

£20000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The company is an established, ...

Recruitment Genius: E-Commerce Manager - Fashion Accessories

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

Recruitment Genius: Accounts Senior / Assistant Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Exciting new position available at an independ...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn