Powell resists Bolt's late surge to gain revenge
Wednesday 23 July 2008
Asafa Powell triumphed over his fellow Jamaican Usain Bolt in their eagerly awaited 100 metres contest at the IAAF Super Grand Prix meeting here last night.
Although the pair met at last month's national championships, Powell was recovering from a shoulder injury at the time and content simply to gain the qualifying time for the Olympic Games. But last night, in their first meaningful encounter, Powell kept his nerve and showed he is back to his very best form with an inspirational victory.
The former world record holder posted a season's best of 9.88 seconds when finishing ahead of his successor as the planet's fastest man by one hundredth of a second, with the promising Norwegian Jaysuma Ndure third in 10.06sec.
Powell, who lost his world mark to Bolt at the end of May, gained his revenge and dominated the race after establishing an early lead after 20 metres. Bolt responded to make a late surge to ensure a grandstand finish, but his challenge came just a little too late.
Cuba's Dayron Robles missed his world 110m hurdles record by just 0.04sec, winning in 12.91sec. Robles had set the world record last month in Ostrava in the Czech Republic. For setting a new stadium record, Robles earned a one-carat diamond worth $10,000 (£5,020).
Robles' time is the fourth-fastest in history, tied with Colin Jackson. Liu Xiang of China ran a 12.88sec and Dominique Arnold of the United States clocked 12.90sec in 2006.
The Olympic champion Jeremy Wariner won his third straight 400-metre race, but failed to improve the stadium record he set last year. The American eased up near the finish and crossed in 44.29sec, 0.39sec off his meeting record.
Running in near-perfect conditions, Wariner took an early lead and was unchallenged. "I went for victory today," he said. "It's a good winning time. Now I'm going home for tough training before the Olympics."
Chris Brown of the Bahamas finished second in 44.53sec and Ricardo Chambers of Jamaica third in 44.84sec.
Abubaker Kaki, a 19-year-old from Sudan, picked up the first diamond prize of the evening by winning the men's 1,000 metres in 2min 13.93sec. Kaki also got his named engraved on the silver Dickson Trophy, which was first contested in a mile race in 1895.
Previous winners of the Dickson Trophy include Britain's Sebastian Coe, the London Olympic 2012 chairman, who watched the race from the stands as a guest of honour.
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