Sat | May 25, 2019

Fraser-Pryce is hot

Published:Sunday | July 22, 2018 | 12:00 AMRaymond Graham
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (left) of Jamaica celebrates after winning the women's 100 metres in 10.98 seconds at the IAAF Diamond League meet at the London Stadium yesterday. American Dezerea Bryant (centre) was second in 11.04 while Jamaica's Jonielle Smith (right) took third in a personal best 11.07.
Ronnie Baker (left) of the United States crosses the finish line to win the men's 100 metres in 9.90 seconds at the London Diamond League meet yesterday. Zharnel Hughes (second right) of Britain was second in 9.93 while third went to Akani Simbine (right) of South Africa in 9.94. Jamaica's Yohan Blake (second left) was fourth in 9.95.

Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce produced a big performance in London yesterday as she continued her comeback in the sport after giving birth to her son, Zyon, on August 7 last year.

The 'Pocket Rocket' clocked a season's best 10.98 seconds to take the women's 100 metres on the opening day of the London Diamond League meet. Fraser-Pryce, who is using this season to prepare for next year's IAAF World Outdoor Championships, sent a strong warning to her rivals that she is slowly getting back to the form that saw her winning the Olympic 100m title in 2008, the World crown the following year, and gold again in London at the 2012 Olympics.




Yesterday, she did not get her usual flying start but showed her class by finding top speed in the latter stages of the race to get the victory. American Dezerea Bryant, who was out very fast, had to settle for second in 11.04, while Jamaica's Jonielle Smith, on her Diamond League debut, ended third in a personal best 11.07.

Fraser-Pryce, the record holder in the event at the meet with a 10.77 clocking from 2013, was pleased with her performance.

"I cannot complain because I haven't raced for ages, and I'm happy that the run today was under 11 seconds. It's hard work racing after having a child, but it's not as though it's anything I'm not used to. I'm used to sacrificing and making sure that my path is right," said Fraser-Pryce.

Smith was also pleased with her new personal best.

"I still need to get my start right, and I know if I get that, I'll be a sub-11-seconds sprinter, so I am excited, a bit iffy, but I'm really happy," said the former Wolmer's Girls sprinter.

Commonwealth Games 400m hurdles champion Janieve Russell had the next best Jamaican performance on the day. She was nipped at the line by Shamier Little of the United States in the one-lap hurdles event and had to settle for second in 53.96 seconds as Little won in 53.95. Third went to Dalilah Mohammad of the United States in 54.86, while Jamaica's Ristananna Tracy was sixth in 56.07.

"It was a really good race because I lost that way in Lausanne, and I wanted to get my dip right. I'm really pleased with the time. I didn't expect to be as consistent as I have been recently, which is very pleasing. It's close to perfect for me," said Russell.

After a slow start to his season, former 2011 World 100m champion Yohan Blake showed that he is getting back to some form after producing a season's best 9.95 seconds for a close fourth-place finish in the men's 100 metres.

Blake had earlier produced his first sub-10 seconds clocking this season after a second place 9.99 seconds in his heat. American Ronnie Baker won the event in 9.90 ahead of Great Britain's Zharnel Hughes (9.93), with Akani Simbine of South Africa taking third in 9.94. National champion Tyquendo Tracy, who finished sixth in 9.98, had earlier posted a personal best 9.96 for a fourth-place finish in his heat.

Making his first Diamond League start in the men's 400m, former St Jago High star Nathon Allen ended seventh in 44.72 seconds as Qatar's Abdalleleh Haroun won the event in a personal best and meet record 44.07.

Jamaica's Kemoy Campbell ended 15th in the men's 5000 metres in a season's best 13:23.73.


Today's schedule for Jamaicans


- 8:04:a.m.: Women's 400m: Stephenie McPherson, Anastacia Le-Roy

- 8:15 a.m.: Women's 100m hurdles Heat 1: Danielle Williams

8:37 a.m.: Men's 110m hurdles: Ronald Levy

8:48 a.m.: Women's 800m: Natoya Goule

9:19 a.m.: Men's 200m: Akeem Bloomfield

9:29 a.m.: Women's 200m: Shericka Jackson