Blake laments not being able to compete in Moscow

BY PAUL A REID Observer writer

Saturday, August 17, 2013

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MOSCOW, Russia — Yohan Blake said he was devastated by the news that he would not be able to defend his men's 100m title at the 14th IAAF World Championships because of a lingering injury to the tendon in the back of his right knee that he suffered at the UTech Classic in April.

"I was really disappointed, I had started the season really well, running a personal record in the 400m, also was feeling good at Gibson Relays and when I heard that I was not going to run, I was devastated," he told journalists during a press conference held in a Moscow hotel yesterday.

Despite the support from his coach, manager and trainer he said the reality was difficult to accept.

Blake became the youngest man ever to win the blue riband event at the World Championships when he took the gold in Daegu, South Korea in 2011.

He shared an exchange between himself Bolt soon after the 100m final where he said he texted his congratulations and Bolt responded by saying, "Sorry you are not there as I know how you love to compete".

This, he said, meant a lot to him.

He reported that he was healing well and was about 95 per cent well, but would know for sure soon after he returns to German-based sports physician Dr Hans Muller-Wolfarth for a final check-up after which he will know when to start training for the 2014 season.

Blake picked up a cramp while running his first 100m race of the season in mid-April, and despite careful attention, it never got better. He ran a 200m race at a JAAA All-comers meet after which the decision was made for him to travel to Germany to see the world renown specialist who had treated several other top athletes, including Usain Bolt.

With his ruined 2013 season behind him Blake, who won two silver medals in the 100m and 200m at the Olympic Games in London last year, both times behind Bolt, as well as 4x100m relay gold, is setting his sights on the 2014 season which he says gives him a great opportunity to get back to where he wants to be.

"I am looking forward to getting back on the track, there are no major championships so this is a perfect opportunity to run the entire Diamond League circuit if my manager agrees it would be really good," he said. Blake noted that he was not interested in the indoors season. "I am not good indoors as I start running (hard) in the last 40 metres," he said with a laugh.

The Commonwealth Games to be held in Scotland are not on the list either. "I have passed that stage now and will leave it to those who need that chance."

Already, he said he is anxious for next season. "I am hungry right now, I can't wait for the doctor to tell me I can resume jogging, but I am taking things step by step as the plan is for the next World Championships and the next Olympic Games," he ended.




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