Tue | Jun 28, 2022

A time for answers

National Championships set to offer big reveals

Published:Thursday | June 23, 2022 | 12:10 AMHubert Lawrence/Gleaner Writer
Yohan Blake
Yohan Blake
Sha’Carri Richardson
Sha’Carri Richardson
Oblique Seville
Oblique Seville
Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce
Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce
Elaine Thompson Herah
Elaine Thompson Herah
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AFTER MONTHS of waiting, fans will finally get answers.

By the time this weekend is over, we’ll all know who will carry Jamaica’s colours to the upcoming World Championships in Eugene, Oregon but that’s not all. By the time this weekend ends, we will also know who will be standing in their way.

The questions are everywhere. Is Oblique Seville for real? Is he really the next great Jamaican male sprinter? Will Akeem Blake go with him to the top and does 32 year-old Yohan Blake have any more in him? Tajay Gayle is doing the 100 this weekend and the event in which he is world champion, the long jump. Is he ready to defend his title?

Can Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce repeat her 2021 Trials double? Will it be 2019 all over again when Elaine Thompson Herah beat Shelly over the 100 and the 200 or will Shericka Jackson take over?

The US Trials will tell us who the Jamaicans will face in Eugene. The focus is on the colourful Sha’Carri Richardson, but in her last race, she lost 10.85 to 10.83 seconds, to fellow American Aleia Hobbs in New York on June 12. Across the Atlantic Ocean, the British Trials will confirm the form of Dina Asher-Smith, runner-up to Fraser Pryce in the 2019 World Championships 100 and winner of the 200 there.

Can Allyson Felix, that elegant champion, make the US team in her farewell season?

NAGGING INJURIES

Will 2019 World discus runner-up Fedrick Dacres recover in time from nagging injuries to take his usual place under the black, green and gold to compete in Eugene. Can Hansle Parchment, surprise Olympic winner last year in Tokyo, add to his four-race winning streak or will Omar McLeod return to the form that saw him win the Olympics in 2016 and the World Championships in 2017?

The questions never end. World 110 metre hurdles champion Grant Holloway came within a hundredth of a second of the world record 12.81 seconds at last year’s US Trials but lost to compatriot Devon Allen in New York with his conqueror zooming to 12.84, the third-fastest time ever. For all we know, the record might fall in Eugene, at the US Trials.

The big question is whether our pair of Olympic champions can outhurdle Holloway and Allen.

The need for answers hangs over the 100 metre hurdles as well. Olympic champion Jasmin Camacho-Quinn of Puerto Rico is as solid a favourite as one can be in an event known to be risky and Nigerian Tobi Amusan is looking more and more like the world number two. However, the Jamaican and US Trials will tell us who will challenge Camacho-Quinn and Amusan. Will Britany Anderson build on her place in the Olympic final? Will world record- holder Kenny Harrison finally win a big one after silver medals at the Worlds and the Olympics or will Olympic bronze medallist Megan Tapper or 2019 third-placer Danielle Williams do the business?

The time for answers is here.

sports@gleanerjm.com