Powell to miss World Relays
Former world 100 metres record holder Asafa Powell, national 400m record holder Rusheen McDonald and Julian Forte are late withdrawals from Jamaica’s IAAF World Relays team which is scheduled to depart today for The Bahamas.
The two-day championships will be held from April 22-23. Powell was down to run in the men’s 4x100m, McDonald in the 4x400m and Forte in the 4x200m. No reason has been given for the withdrawal of the three athletes.
Technical director of Jamaica’s team, Maurice Wilson, said the absence of the trio is major blow for the country.
“Asafa Powell has run on every single one of our victorious 4x100m male relay teams and so his experience and talent can hardly be replaced,” said Wilson.
“It’s a big disappointment but we do have mixed of athletes that will perform very well for us,” he said.
“McDonald is also a big blow because he was part of that team won a medal at the Olympic Games and so he will be missed,” he said.
Wilson added the Forte is one country’s talented young sprinters and his absence from the men’s 4x200m team is a major blow.
“In the past three years, he (Forte) has been one of our most consistent new sprinters and he is one of those guys that we looking forward to filling in the gaps when the other senior athletes would have moved on so his presence will be highly missed,” Wilson said.
However, despite the absence of the trio along with triple Olympic gold medallist Usain Bolt, Wilson said still expects the team to do well.
“When you are in track and field these are some of the unexpected situations you will encounter and we just have to deal with it,” he said.
“We have a talented team and I am confident that they will do us proud in The Bahamas,” Wilson stated.
The team will be led by Olympic sprint champion Elaine Thompson and 2011 world 100m champion Yohan Blake.