Danielle Williams targets PB, spot in final
Competing in her second World Championships, Jamaican sprint hurdler Danielle Williams looked smooth as she stopped the clock at 12.77 in the 100m heats at the World Championships in Beijing's Birds Nest.
Williams got the better of American hopeful Kendra Harrison 12.90 and Isabelle Petersen, 12.96 of Norway, in what was her third time in the 12.7 seconds range this season.
However, the diminutive hurdler is not getting ahead of herself and is fully cognisant that she will most likely need to run much faster than 12.77 or than her personal best, 12.69, if she is to be a factor in what is one of the most competitive events at the championships.
"I feel like I've been sitting around for way too long so I'm happy to have started," said Williams, who said she was becoming restless with the wait for her competition to start.
"I'm definitely not surprised with the time because I've been running 12.7s consistently all season, so I'm definitely expecting to go faster, hopefully, my legs hold up," she added.
"The aim is to run a personal best here and in any event, I think it's what it will require to get to the finals anyway," said Williams, who has finished in the top three in all 11 of her competitions this season.
"Mentally, I am definitely more prepared than I was in 2013. Besides, back then, I hadn't run with these world-class athletes, it was my first time coming up against them and I was a bit timid. Now I've been competing against them all season long so I feel on par," Williams added.
"I consider my changes as good as anybody else. It's a hurdles race, so anything is possible. I'm a competitor at heart and I tell people that I don't run track and field because I love it. It's because I love the competition, so I am anxious to go out there and compete with the best of the best, toe to toe to the line," Williams said.
"I'm pretty satisfied with my execution. I'm sure my coach will probably find something that I probably didn't do right, but I'll watch the tape and come back and, hopefully, I can fix it going into the final," she added.
Williams, the national champion, said she is not focusing on any perceived pressure being the fastest Jamaican this year and the national champion, but is backing herself to do really well here.
"I'm not really focusing on that I'm just focusing on executing, taking it round by round, race by race, and, hopefully, I run fast enough to make it into the finals," said.