André Lowe, Senior Staff Reporter
The Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) yesterday named a strong 50-member squad for next week's IAAF World Championships in Athletics, which will be staged in the South Korean city of Daegu.
Four winners from the championships' last instalment in Berlin, Germany, in 2009 - Usain Bolt (100m, 200m); Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (100m); Melaine Walker (400m hurdles) and Brigitte Foster-Hylton (100m hurdles) - will lead the team into the Asian city for the August 27 to September 4 championships.
Bolt, who established world records of 9.58 seconds and 19.19 seconds in the 100m and 200m, respectively, the last time he competed at these championships, will be joined by 24 other male athletes, including the likes of 100m hopefuls Asafa Powell, Yohan Blake and Nesta Carter, who despite finishing one position outside the automatic qualifying spots, should be promoted to contest the individual event, following the recent doping allegations surrounding Steve Mullings, who will have to sit out the championships as he tries to clear his name.
Isa Phillips, who finished fifth at the JAAA/Supreme Ventures National Senior Championships in June, trumps third-place finisher Roxroy Cato for a spot on the team after running a season-best 48.94 seconds at a meet in Germany to satisfy the IAAF 'A' qualifying standard of 49.40 - a mark that Cato has failed to meet in time.
National 110m hurdles record holder Dwight Thomas, national 400m record holder Jermaine Gonzales and the promising Dexter Lee, Nickel Ashmeade and Leford Green, have, as expected, all been included.
Fraser-Pryce will look to extend her gold medal-winning streak at major championships, as she joins the likes of multiple medallists and national 100m and 200m champion Veronica Campbell-Brown, 400m hurdling pair Walker and the in-form world leader Kaliese Spencer, Kenia Sinclair (800m), Berlin 2009 100m silver medalist Kerron Stewart and 400m trio Novlene Williams-Mills, Rosemarie Whyte and Shericka Williams, who mined a silver medal two years ago in Berlin.
Also included in the 25-member female team are fast-rising national junior 400m hurdles record holder Ristananna Tracey, national 100m hurdles champion Indira Spence and 100m surprise package Jura Levy.
The team will be led by Grace Jackson, who is already in Daegu making preparations for the squad's arrival. The technical leader is Fitz Coleman and head coach Maurice Wilson.
Lincoln Eatmon and Deon Hemmings-McCatty will serve as assistant managers, while Michael Clarke, Bert Cameron, Edward Hector, Lennox Graham and Maurice Westney will complete a high-calibre coaching panel.
Dr Kevin Gwyn Jones is the team's doctor.
Vilma Charlton, Dennis Gordon, Carlene Edwards, Gavin James, Pier-Ann Patterson-Brown, Okeile Stewart, Michael Douglas, Colin Turner, Patrick Watson and Everald Edwards have all been listed as officials of the team.
Several members of the coaching and management team were scheduled to leave the island today ahead of the team's pre-championships camp in Gyeonasan, South Korea, which will be staged August 18 to 23.
Males - Usain Bolt, Asafa Powell, Michael Frater, Yohan Blake, Nesta Carter, Marvin Anderson, Lansford Spence, Nickel Ashmeade, Mario Forsythe, Dwight Thomas, Richard Phillips, Isa Phillips, Jermaine Gonzales, Josef Robertson, Andrew Riley, Allodin Fothergill, Maurice Smith, Dorian Scott, Damar Forbes, Wilbert Walker, Jason Morgan, Leford Green, Dexter Lee, Dewayne Barrett, and Riker Hylton
Females - Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Kerron Stewart, Jura Levy, Veronica Campbell-Brown, Sherone Simpson, Davita Prendergast, Novlene Williams-Mills, Shericka Williams, Patricia Hall, Kenia Sinclair, Shereefa Lloyd, Brigitte Foster-Hylton, Schillonie Calvert, Melaine Walker, Kaliese Spencer, Nickiesha Wilson, Korene Hinds, Kimberly Williams, Rosemarie Whyte, Ristananna Tracey, Aleen Bailey, Mardrea Hyman, Vonette Dixon, Indira Spence and Jovanee Jarrett.