Thu | Aug 17, 2017

Wilson believes Jamaican athletes will shine in Rio

Published:Tuesday | May 31, 2016 | 5:00 AMHubert Lawrence
Technical Leader of Jamaica’s track and field team Maurice Wilson shakes hands with Usain Bolt at the Kuntai Hotel inBeijing, China, ahead of the World Championships in Athletics last year.

Maurice Wilson, Jamaica's head track and field coach to the 2012 Olympic Games and the World Championships in 2011 and 2015, is optimistic about the nation's prospects for this summer's Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Wilson is, however, also cautious and is looking forward to the National Senior Championships, before he starts counting medals.

Speaking after a recent training session at the GC Foster College for Physical Education where he lectures and coaches, he said: "I am expecting us to do very well, but at this point in time we want to be very cautious, watch what will happen at the National Championships and take it from there.

"I'm feeling much better than I felt last year," he said in reference to Jamaica's 12-medal haul at the 15th IAAF World Championships.

"I would still want to be a little bit cautious," he nevertheless advised.

"A lot of our perennial medal dependants are persons who have been going from 2008," he observed. "We need to take that into consideration, that's eight years later.

"But I still believe because of how resolute we are, how proud we are as a nation and as a people, that if you're going to think about top performances, you have to think Jamaica first," he concluded.

Jamaica's best Olympic performances have come in 2008, when the nation's athletes took home six gold, three silver and two bronze medals and in 2012, when they collected four gold, four silver and four bronze medals.

At the World Championships, Jamaica have twice come home with seven gold medals. That was first achieved in 2009, when the overall medal haul was 13 and last year, when the full collection was 12.