In earnest - Thompson-Herah sets sights on Japan Olympics

In earnest - Thompson-Herah sets sights on Japan Olympics

Saturday, September 26, 2020

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FRESH from back-to-back wins in her shortened Diamond League season after victory in the women's 100m at the Doha Diamond League meeting yesterday, Elaine Thompson-Herah is already looking ahead to defending her Olympic Games sprint double title next in Tokyo, Japan next year.

Thompson-Herah clocked a brisk 10.87 seconds (0.0m/s) to win in Doha yesterday, a week after her world-leading 10.85 seconds in Rome, Italy, to complete a perfect season in the 100m –winning seven-straight races in the outdoor season that was truncated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

It was her first season in the last three years during which she has not been slowed by a persistent Achilles tendon injury. “I am happy to win but my major focus is to finish the year healthy,” she said, adding that her focus now was on beginning training for next year.

“Preparations for the Olympics is the next [task] on my agenda, and it begins in earnest. I don't normally celebrate a win for long and tonight – I am just going to have some rest [and] eat good food before heading to the airport. I hope to resume training in earnest.”

Yesterday she was never challenged as she sped to an easy win, beating Marie-Josee Ta Lou (11.21 seconds) who improved on her third place in Rome and American Kayla Whyte who came third in 11.25 seconds, while Anthonique Strachan of The Bahamas was fifth in a joint season's best 11.42 seconds.

Thompson-Herah throws her name in the hat for Athlete of the Year nomination with four of the top six times in the world in the 100m, while compatriot Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce has the second and third best times.

Meanwhile, two other Jamaicans also competed in Doha yesterday. Julian Forte ran a season's best 20.39 seconds (0.9m/s) to place second in the men's 200m, beaten by Arthur Cisse's Ivory Coast national record 20.33 seconds, while France's Christophe Lemaitre was third in 20.68 seconds.

Yanique Thompson was eighth in the 100m hurdles in 13.52 seconds (1.1m/s) as American Payton Chadwick won in 12.78 seconds, with another American Taliyah Brooks taking second with a personal best 12.86 seconds.

—Paul Reid

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