Wed | Jan 22, 2020

Better than ever! - Boldon expects Williams to improve her times in 2020

Published:Sunday | December 15, 2019 | 12:53 AMAndre Lowe - Sports Editor
Williams

Coach Ato Boldon is expecting Jamaican sprinting prodigy Briana Williams to eclipse her performances from last season in the coming year, after a strong start to her preparations so far.

Williams, who stopped the clock at 10.94 seconds for third place at the National Senior Championships in June, before it was revealed that she had tested positive for a banned substance at the championships, also clocked 22.88 seconds in the 200m over the last campaign.

She had posted an 11.02 seconds clocking just ahead of the championships, which is currently listed as her personal best in the 100m by World Athletics.

Significantly, the sprinter was cleared of any wrongdoing by the Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel, which ruled that she bore no significant fault or negligence and had no intention to cheat.

Nevertheless, the 17-year-old has seemingly moved on from that setback and has picked up from where she left off, with Boldon telling The Sunday Gleaner that his young charge looks set to improve her times in 2020.

“In 2019, only five women ran faster at 100m. I’ve considered the possibility that she had been holding back in practice the last two years, training with a group. That’s clearly not the case this year, and she has set numerous personal bests in her preseason practice runs,” Boldon shared.

The former Trinidad and Tobago sprinting star admitted that he had considered adding a female to his camp to train alongside Williams, but shared that the Jamaican preferred to train by herself and has looked better than ever.

MAJOR CONCERNS

“As far as her training, I had some major concerns when we started in October. She had no female training partners for the first time under me and she hadn’t competed since July,” he added.

“I thought taking in someone to train with her would be a good idea. Well, it turns out I was wrong. She assured me she didn’t need a training partner. Her workouts have always accurately indicated to me what’s coming, and she will be better in 2020 than she was in 2019,” Boldon said.

Meanwhile, the sprinter, who will compete as a pro next season, is currently negotiating with potential shoe sponsors and her publicist and brand manager Tanya Lee noted the athlete’s global appeal.

“We have not made any decisions related to Briana going pro or who her sponsors are as yet. All negotiations are entirely private at this time. I can confirm, however, that there are numerous companies that have expressed an interest in signing Briana,” said Lee.

“Briana has great brand appeal. She is youthful, articulate, she works hard, she runs fast and she has great connection and engagement with a youthful audience. She is already an accomplished world record holder with her sights on much more to come in the future. These make her a winning choice on and off the track,” added Lee.