The newly crowned Euro-pean 100 metres champion Dwain Chambers faces the stiffest test of his career when he takes on the world record holder Maurice Greene in tonight's IAAF Golden League meeting in Zurich.
Chambers is level-headed enough to realise his personal best of 9.96sec when winning in Munich was against a field where he was superior. But in the world's most famous track and field meeting Chambers has an opportunity to challenge the five-year 100m reign of Greene.
Having already beaten America's Olympic and world champion twice this year, Chambers could already be touted as a genuine challenger. But the 24-year-old Londoner is aiming for more consistency after leg cramps caused him to fail in the Commonwealth 100m final in Manchester last month. That came on top of failing to win any medals at the 2000 Olympic Games and last year's World Championships.
The atmosphere experienced in the 25,000-capacity Letzigrund Stadium is where Europe's No 1 will have to reproduce and even better the form which earned him a World Championship bronze medal three years ago. But Greene has returned to Europe fit and raring to go, unlike his form in the first half of the Golden League programme.
Greene's colleagues in the HSI camp claim the world No 1 is back to his best. The defeats he suffered at the end of June in Oslo and later in Sheffield have not been forgotten and have made him more determined to exact revenge.
It was suggested that Chambers, after his punishing schedule in the Bavarian capital where he won 100m and 4x100m relay gold and also captained the British side, should have given the Swiss meeting a miss. "Dwain is fit and wants to run," his coach, Mike McFarlane, said. "You have to remember this is Zurich – everybody wants to run there."
That is testimony to the entry list, which includes 12 world champions from last year and 11 current Olympic gold medallists.
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