The Jamaican Pocket Rocket completed her sprint double mission in the Luzhniki Stadium last night, the 5ft Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce speeding to 200 metres gold in 22.17sec – after the three-time champion Allyson Felix of the United States pulled up with a torn hamstring 50 metres into the race. Tonight, it will the turn of the 6ft 5in Jamaican Lightning Bolt.
While the British Billy Whizz Kid Adam Gemili smashed through the 20-second barrier, Usain Bolt was content to keep his powder dry in his 200m semi-final, staying in neutral and almost conceding victory to Anaso Jobodwana before crossing the line in 20.12sec, 0.01sec ahead of the young South African.
James Ellington finished fourth in that race and Delano Williams seventh in the opening semi-final, leaving Gemili as the sole British representative in the final.
Having regained the global 100m crown last Sunday, Bolt is on course for a place alongside Carl Lewis in the record books. The American holds the highest tally of medals won by a male athlete at the World Championships: eight golds, one silver and one bronze. Bolt (below) has eight so far: six golds and two silvers.
With the 200m final tonight and the 4x100m relay tomorrow, the 26-year-old is poised to match that tally before packing his bags in the Russian capital. “I’m looking forward to seeing how fast I can go in the final tomorrow,” he said.
For the first time in six years there will be a British representative in the men’s 1500m final tomorrow. Chris O’Hare battled his way through on the inside to finish fourth in a semi-final won by Asbel Kiprop, the reigning world champion from Kenya. “I just kind of pretended that I knew what I was doing,” the 22-year-old Scot said. “In races like these you’ve got to blag.”
The British men’s 4x400m relay team were shooting for a place on the podium in their final but finished down in fourth, behind the United States, Jamaica and Russia. There was also disappointment for Marilyn Okoro and Laura Muir. The British pair failed to make it to the women’s 800m final, both finishing seventh in their semi-finals.