National 100-metre record holder Elaine Thompson says an achilles injury is denying her the chance to return to her best.
The 25-year-old was at her best at Rio 2016when she became thefirst woman in 28 years to win the Olympic sprint double.
Thompson confirmed her achilles injury after she recovered from a slow start at the National Stadium on Saturday night to easily win the women's 100 metres at the Jamaica International Invitational Meeting (JIIM), the opening leg of the 2018IAAF World Challengeseries.
Thompson trailed training partner Christania Williams at the halfway stage before going into overdrive to cross the line in 11.06 seconds (-0.3 m/s).
“I wanted to get a faster time,” said Thompson. “My start wasn’t great, because I’m still bothered by an achilles injury so it’s hard for me to push from the blocks in the first 30 metres, but I’m still working on it to get into better shape.”
Jamaica dominated the race by occupying the first five places.
Kerron Stewart (11.25) competing in her farewell race in Jamaica came through on the inside to snatch second in a tight finish a mere 0.01 ahead of Natasha Morrison.
Christania Williams (11.35) and Jura Levy (11.38) finished fourth and fifth, respectively. American Tianna Bartoletta finished sixth in 11.43.
Thompson's victory came 11 days after she pulled out of theDiamond League meeting in Shanghai due to what meet organisers called a "physical issue."
A week before that Thompson had finished third in the women's 100 metres at the Diamond League meeting in Doha.
The meet was highlighted by a world lead and two meet records. However, the USA and Jamaica dominated the action by combining to win 12 of the 17 events. USA ended with seven victories, while Jamaica secured five.
American De AnnaPrice produced the world lead and a meet record inthe women's hammer throw, while Nigerian Ese Brume achieved the other meet record in the women's long jump.
MEN’S SPRINT WINS FOR BAKER AND TAYLOR
In the men’s 100 metres,Ronnie Baker registered 10.00, (2.0 m/s) the third fastest time this season, to lead a US 1-2 finish with teammate Mike Rodgers (10.04). Jamaican Tyquendo Tracey (10.14) rounded out the podium cast.
The two other Jamaicans in the race - Oshane Bailey (10.28) and Nesta Carter (10.35) finished fourth and fifth, respectively.
Christopher Taylor wins the men's 200m at the Jamaica International Invitational meeting. (PHOTO: Marlon Reid).
When world U20 world leader Jamaican Christopher Taylor was announced as a last minute inclusion in the men’s 200m, interest in the event skyrocketed and the race certainly lived up to expectations.
Taylor, drawn in lane seven with American LaShawn Merritt on his inside in six and South African speedster Anaso Jobodwana in four, stormed out of the blocks and flew around the top bend to gain a two-metre lead coming into the home straight.
Merritt, who came off the curve languishing in fifth, made up considerable ground in the final 50 metres to reel in the entire field except for Taylor who was not entertaining defeat. Taylor outlasted Merritt to score one of his most satisfying wins in 20.49 (0.0 m/s) sending the home crowd into a frenzy. Merritt who was suffering his first loss this season from three starts crossed the line in 20.70 the same time as third place finisher Jobodwana.
Jamaican Shericka Jackson successfully chased down world leader Blessing Okagbare-Ighoteguonor in the women's 200 metres.Jackson stopped the clock at 22.55 (+0.4 m/s) to the Nigerian’s 22.66. American Phyllis Francis clocked 22.76 for third place, while Jamaicans Sherone Simpson (23.31) and Simone Facey (23.87) finished seventh and eighth, respectively.
Jamaican Demish Gaye defended his men’s 400m title winning in 45.08, the same time as last year. It was a one-two finish for Jamaica as Javon Francis (45.35) accelerated down the straight to move from fourth to second edging Grenadian Bralon Taplin who had to settle for third in 45.41.
Jessica Beard ran with assurance from gun to tape to score a good win in the women’s 400m in a new personal best of 50.52, beating his American teammate Jaide Stepter (50.72). The other six places were occupied by Jamaicans with Stephenie-Ann McPherson, finishing third in 50.52.
In the women’s 100m hurdles, American Jasmin Stowers (12.83) scored a narrow win ahead of compatriot Kori Carter (12.87). Shimayra Williams was the best of the Jamaicans, finishing fourth in 13.14.
Jamaican Janieve Russell reacts after winning the women's 400m hurdlesat the Jamaica International Invitational meeting.(PHOTO: Marlon Reid).
Commonwealth Games champions Janieve Russell scored a convincing win in the women’s 400m hurdles in 54.26, almost a second ahead of runner-up American Ashley Spencer 55.23. Leah Nugent of Jamaica finished third in 55.37.
T. J Holmes took down some big scalps in the men’s one-lap obstacle event as he streaked away in a season’s best 48.67. Jamaica’s Shawn Rowe was next in 49.12 followed by Olympic champion Kerron Clement in a season’s best 49.37. “It’s my second race of the season and I’m progressing nicely and to me that is all that matters,” said Clement.
PRICE NABS FIRST HAMMER THROW CHALLENGE POINTS
DeAnn Price of the USA in action at the Jamaica International Invitational Meeting.(PHOTO: Marlon Reid).
The IAAF Hammer Challenge Throwwas without doubt one of the highlights of the meet with the charismatic DeAnna Price winning the hearts of the appreciative Jamaican crowd.
Price, who was flawless throughout, opened with 73.54m which would have won even if she fouled her next attempts. However, this was her day to shine albeit in overcast conditions. In the second round she produced a mighty swing, launching her hammer high into the evening sky and when it landed some 75.96m away, the distance improved the meeting record by more than two metres and effectively killed the competition.
Price wasn’t done yet as the small matter of world lead was still on offer. She duly obliged in the fourth round with another herculean effort of 76.27m. Former meet record-holder Gwen Berry was the best of the rest with 71.32m.
There was almost growing disbelief among the home crowd watching Commonwealth Games champions Danniel Thomas-Dodd struggling to reach 18 metres in the women’s shot put. Jeneva Stevens was the only woman to manage the barrier, her last round effort of 18.17m the longest. Thomas-Dodd’s best of 17.96m was still good enough for the runner-up spot.
Elsewhere Nigeria’s Ese Brume established a new women's long jump meet record after cutting the sand at 6.82m.
In the men's high jump, Jamal Wilson led a Bahamian sweep, topping 2.28m to equal the meet record. Trevor Barry got the nod for second ahead of Donald Thomas after both men could go no higher than 2.25m.
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