Blake over the moon
DAEGU, South Korea:
Jamaica won its first gold medal at the 13th IAAF World Championships in Athletics last night inside the Daegu Stadium, but it came at an expense, as Yohan Blake became the youngest-ever world 100 metres champion, making the most of a Usain Bolt disqualification for false starting to win in a season- best 9.92 seconds.
Bolt has been quick out of the blocks since the 100m competition started on the championships' opening day on Saturday - a new element to his arsenal, but this time he was too eager as he clearly pre-empted the starter and was forced to watch his training partner run away with his title.
When the starter's gun sounded a second time, Jamaica's other competitor, Nesta Carter, found himself in trouble early in the race, wearing a clear grimace on his face as he came out of the starting blocks and was in clear discomfort.
Blake, 21, however, kept his cool and held off the early challenge of veteran Kim Collins, who was eventually pipped on the line by American Walter Dix, who ran 10.08 with the Kittitian registering 10.09.
"It's a wonderful feeling, trust me," said Blake, who becomes Glen Mills' latest world-beating disciple after his work with the likes of Bolt, Collins and Ray Stewart. "I'm feeling over the moon right now. I can hardly find words to talk about it, but to win the gold medal at 21 is a great feeling."
Blake, a former star at the St Jago High school, pointed out to journalists that he received an extra motivation upon witnessing the disqualification of his 'Bredrin'.
"Knowing that he is my close friend and training partner, I just had to go out there and get the job done because I know that's what he would have wanted me to do," said Blake.
"Its very unfortunate because we have talked about this a lot; about the two of us battling for the gold medal at the big moment and to have fun, so to see him get disqualified is sad, we haven't talked as yet, but we will as soon as I'm done here," said Blake.
Bolt did not walk through the mixed zone after the race but was quoted:
"Looking for tears? Not going to happen, I'm ok."
Jamaica will be hoping for a better return today when the women's 400m and 100m finals are scheduled to be contested, as well as the men's 110m hurdles final.
National champion Novlene Williams-Mills and Shericka Williams booked their places in the 400m medals round after second-place finishes in the semi-finals. Rosemarie Whyte failed to progress after finishing third in her semi and barely missing out to defending champion Sanya Richards as a fastest loser.
Jermaine Gonzales won his heat in 45.12 seconds, while, despite finishing fifth, Riker Hylton, the national champion, squeezed into the next round as a fastest loser with 45.54.
National record holder Dwight Thomas, 13.31 seconds, is the fourth-fastest qualifier to the next round, where he will have Jamaicans Andrew Riley, 13.47, and Richards Philips, 13.53, as company. The semi-finals and final (7:25 a.m. Jamaica time), along with the women's 100m final (7:45 a.m. Jamaica time), will be run early today.