Sat | Jul 21, 2018

Blake will bounce back - Mills

Published:Tuesday | April 10, 2018 | 12:00 AMAkino Ming/Staff Reporter
Collin Reid Photo courtesy of Guardian Life, Courts Jamaica, VMBS, Sports Development Foundation and Alliance Investments. Jamaica's Christania Williams (center) finishes second in 11.21 seconds, behind winner Michelle-Lee Ahye who clocked 11.14 seconds in the Women's 100m final at the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, Australia yesterday. Williams' teammate Gayon Evans took the bronze in 11.22 seconds.
Collin Reid Photo courtesy of Guardian Life, Courts Jamaica, VMBS, Sports Development Foundation and Alliance Investments. Jamaica's Yohan Blake finishes third in a time of 10.19 seconds behind South Africans Akani Simbine (winner in 10.03 seconds) and Henricho Bruintjies (10.17 seconds) in the men's 100m at the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast in Australia yesterday morning.
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Although he expressed disappointment at the third-place finish by Yohan Blake in the 100m final at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in Australia yesterday, coach Glen Mills said that the sprinter's performance through the rounds indicates that he will continue to improve for the rest of the season.

Blake, who came into the final as favourite after cruising to 10.06 seconds in the semi-finals, had to struggle for the bronze medal after stumbling in the first 30m of the race. His effort to recover was not enough to catch the South Africans Akani Simbine and Henricho Bruintjies, who won the gold and silver medals, respectively, in times of 10.03 and 10.17 seconds. Blake registered 10.19 in his effort.

"The outcome was very disappointing based on how he has been performing in the preliminary rounds and based on the condition that he is in and how he ran in the semi-final. He had a terrible beginning, and for some reason, he wasn't able to make any correction," Mills said. "But one race doesn't determine the season, and I would like to think that we can correct whatever went wrong and do well in the rest of the season."

In his assessment of the race, Mills said that Blake's awkward steps in his drive phase threw off his balance.

"He lost some balance and he just didn't correct his sprinting position. He just wasn't sprinting at all," Mills said. "We plan to run a lot more this year than the previous two years. He is definitely in need of a lot of top-level performance competition."

 

TWO MORE MEDALS

 

Blake's bronze medal was the third medal Jamaica won on the day, as Christania Williams and Gayon Evans grabbed silver and bronze, respectively, in the women's 100m. Williams recovered from a poor start to finish second in a time of 11.21, while Evans ran a lifetime best of 11.22 seconds for third. Michelle-Lee Ahye won in 11.14 seconds.

The country's medal count, which now stands at four - two silver and two bronze - should increase today when Jovan Francis, Rusheen McDonald and Demish Gaye contest the men's 400m final. Francis, who is coming into the final with the second-fastest time, is expected to be on the podium.

The hurdlers, Hansle Parchment, De'Jour Russell and Ronald Levy, will also have their chance to add to the medal count as they have also advanced to today's final. Veteran hurdler Parchment is expected to lead the way after running 13.30 seconds to win his heat. Levy, who was having a breakout season last year before he stumbled in the semi-final of the IAAF World Athletics Championships, will also have something to prove.