André Lowe, Senior Staff Reporter
Fraser-Pryce, Parchment grab silver, bronze for Jamaica
LONDON, England:Silver for Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and a historic bronze medal for Hansle Parchment; Jamaica continued to chalk up the medals at the London Olympic Games, as the tally rose to six, following last night's action.
Fraser-Pryce, the 100m champion who clocked a personal best 22.09, continued her Olympic medal streak, this time in her recently adopted 200m. She blazed the corner before holding on for a silver medal behind the pre-race favourite - a fast finishing Allyson Felix (US), who won her first Olympic 200m gold medal in 21.88. Carmelita Jeter was third in 22.14.
It was the first time Fraser-Pryce was attempting the sprint double at a major international championship, pushing her Olympic medal tally to four in two instalments of the games, with the 4x100m still to come here in London.
"I mean, a silver medal in the 200m, what more could I ask for?" Fraser-Pryce beamed shortly after the final. "Everybody wants to win and you want to have that double gold medal and it didn't happen, but I have to give God thanks for everything."
Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008 champion Veronica Campbell-Brown, 22.38, faded to fourth place after a decent first 100m, but remains thankful, while congratulating the medallists, particularly her long-time rival Felix, for the win.
"I have to be grateful. I am healthy. My objective was to at least get a medal, but it wasn't there for me this time," Campbell-Brown said. "I'm happy for her. Allyson and I have been racing each other for many years, and I know how badly she wanted it and I'm happy for her."
Perhaps a surprise for many, national champion Parchment, added "national record holder and Olympic medallist" to his name, becoming Jamaica's first sprint hurdles medallist at the Olympic Games.
Parchment lowered the national record twice, firstly in the semi-final with 13.14 before posting a determined 13.12 in the final to finish behind American Aries Merritt, 12.92, and Jason Richardson, 13.04. The previous national record was Dwight Thomas' 13.15.
Despite being happy with his medal, Parchment was disappointed not to have dipped below the 13-second barrier.
"I'm very happy. I wish I was a little bit happier, as I would have been if I had run sub-13," he told The Gleaner.
The man who hails from the small St Thomas community of Cashew Bush, and who spent most of his years at Morant Bay High School before moving on to Kingston College, also took time to hail his coach at the University of West Indies, where he currently studies, Fitz Coleman.
"I believe that Mr Coleman is one of the best hurdles coach there is and not just coaching. He is like a father figure to me and has assisted me in many things, not just track and field, and I am very thankful for him being there," Parchment said.
Kaliese Spencer, 56.66, for the third straight major championships, finished fourth in the final of the 400m hurdles, which was won by Natalya Antyukh, 52.70, with Lashinda Demus, 52.77, and Zuzana Hejnova, 53.38 taking the other medals.
The medal hunt will continue today with the final of the men's 200m, where defending champion Usain Bolt will lead a Jamaican triple threat, including Yohan Blake and Warren Weir.