Saturday, September 28, 2019

Doha, Qatar — Sprinters Yohan Blake and Tyquendo Tracey advanced to the semi-finals of the men's 100m as did Kemar Mowatt in the 400m hurdles, but there was no luck for triple jumper Jordan Scott who pulled up injured and failed to make the final.

Blake, who became the youngest World champion in 2011, looked to be in tip-top shape as he eased home in 10.07 seconds (-0.3 mps) ahead of Jimmy Vicaut of France, who was second in 10.08 seconds. Arthur Cisse of the Ivory Coast was third in 10.14 seconds.

Running out of lane four, Blake got a very good start although his reaction time of 0.166 suggested that he was last out of the blocks — but that was not evident as he led at the halfway mark and eased home ahead of Vicaut fairly comfortably. He was the fourth-fastest heading into the semi-finals.

The heats were topped by race favourite Christian Coleman of the United States of America, who won heat six in 9.98 seconds after basically stopping at the line.

Jamaica's other entrant, Tracey was fourth in heat two in 10.21 seconds and advanced as one of the fastest losers. In fact, he was 23rd out of the 24 semi-finalists. He was not pleased.

“Definitely not the type of race I wanted. The last race before this I had the same struggle not getting up tall and going through the transition properly,” said Tracey.

“I started doing all sort of crap in the last part of the race but honestly, I was nervous and that's through the window now — so it's just to look forward to tomorrow,” he explained.

Defending champion Justin Gatlin won heat two in 10.06 seconds, Zharnel Hughes won heat three in 10.08 seconds, and an easy-looking Akani Simbine of South Africa won heat one in 10.01 seconds.

Blake and Gatlin will line up in semi-final two, while Tracey is in semi-final three along with Zharnel Hughes, Simbine, Michael Rodgers and Jimmy Vicaut.

Jamaica's lone entrant in the men's 400m hurdles, Kemar Mowatt, qualified for the semi-final after he finished fourth in 49.63 seconds. Race favourite Karsten Warholm won in 49.27 seconds without breaking a sweat.

All the “big guns” won their heats easily, with hometown hero and poster boy Abderrahman Samba quickest into the semis with 49.08 seconds. Rai Benjamin tried hard to contain himself and jogged home in 49.62 seconds, while Kyron McMaster of British Virgin Islands won heat two in 49.60 seconds.

Meanwhile, Scott could only make one attempt in the triple jump, with 14.73m, before he pulled up injured and failed to complete his final two jumps.

— Howard Walker