Sat | Sep 23, 2017

It's Ahoure or Gardner for 100m

Published:Saturday | May 28, 2016 | 5:00 AM
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (right) and Murielle Ahoure.

K.C. Graham: All eyes will be on Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce today in the women's 100m as there is speculation that she is not yet ready to compete with the big girls due to a toe injury.

Lowe: She certainly isn't ready and has said as much, noting yesterday that this is a test to see where she is. Still, she's a fighter and will try her best I'm sure. However, after missing as much training as she has, it's hard to see her winning here.

K.C. Graham: And the field is a quality one as there are four sub-10.80 seconds athletes in the field although I do not expect much from Carmelita Jeter and it will be interesting to see how Blessing Okagbare runs here after being easily beaten by Elaine Thompson recently.

Lowe: Fraser-Pryce won here last year in 10.81 but I doubt we'll see that kind of time from anyone in this field today unless helped by wind. Nobody is in particularly great form and it might be an opportunity for another Jamaican, Simone Facey, who has gone 11.00 and 11.05 this year to make a good impression.

K.C. Graham: I am really happy for Facey, who is making a big comeback this season and I expect her to improve on her season's best of 11.00 seconds. However, I think they will all have to chase English Gardner, who likes this track and this is home for her as she has scored several wins in the past here including NCAA titles for Oregon. I think she could go sub-10.90.

Lowe: She had a close win last year in the 'B' race over Elaine Thompson in 10.84 and like you said, loves to compete here in front of her fans from college days. She has also gone 11.04 this year too and has been bouncing around in the hotel and looking quite eager to step on the track.

K.C. Graham: The race is going to be very close though as Barbara Pierre, the Indoor 60 metres champion, is bubbling with confidence while Ahoure and Bartoletta want to do well. I think Fraser-Pryce will just go through the motions here as coach Stephen Francis is a smart guy and is waiting for Rio but you know as a Nike athlete she has to show up for this meet.

Lowe: I think she wants to do more than just show up here. She has missed several training sessions and is running out of time before trials. She won't risk further injury - I don't think, but she'll certainly want to give herself and her coach a real opportunity to see just where they are at this point. I think Ahoure has this one covered. She's been working well so far this season especially on the final phase. She wins a close one ahead of Gardner. A healthy finish will be key for SFP at this stage, a fast time would be a bonus and winning is not her primary focus here.

K.C. Graham: You can take this trifecta to the bank my friend. It is Gardner from Ahoure from a fast finishing Okagbare for third.

Lowe: Thank you but I'll pass, my record so far speaks for itself so let me reiterate. Ahoure over Gardner. Third place is up for grabs.