JAAA names star-studded team to World Champs in Eugene, Oregon

AFTER weeks of speculation it was confirmed yesterday that defending women’s 100m champions Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce will be contesting the sprint double at the World Athletics Championships set to be held at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, from July 15-24.

Fraser-Pryce was named for both events in a release from the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) yesterday that saw 60 athletes being named for the 10-day championships.

Included in the team are 11 athletes who were included despite not making their respective qualifying mark in their events. They were added because they were ranked high enough in their events to be included in the quota of athletes that will take part in the championships.

The only surprise came after it was announced that United States-born Andrew Hudson, who won the 200m at the National Championships, “is not eligible to compete for Jamaica until July 28”, the release stated. It added that Akeem Bloomfield will compete in the 200m.

Hudson, who represented the US until July 2020, has to complete a two-year break from international competition after both the American and Jamaican federations agreed on his application for the transfer.

Jamaica’s Shanieka Ricketts competes in the women’s triple jump event during the IAAF Diamond League (athletics) Doha meeting at the Khalifa International Stadium in the Qatar capital on Friday, May 13, 2022. (Photo: AFP)

Bloomfield did not contest the 200m at last weekend’s four-day national championships at the National Stadium whch was used to select the team, but he was the only other Jamaican who had achieved the qualifying time.

Bloomfield finished sixth in the men’s 400m and was also named as part of the mixed relay team.

Up to last weekend, Fraser-Pryce had not declared her hand as to whether she would run both events as she did last year at the Olympic Games,and had said at a press conference before the Paris Diamond League meeting that the double was physically challenging.

She is part of the powerful women’s sprint team that includes Olympic Games double champion Elaine Thompson-Herah, national double champion Shericka Jackson, and Kemba Nelson.

For the first time Jamaica will have three representatives in the women’s 800m i Natoya Goule, national champion Chrisann Gordon-Powell, and Adelle Tracey whose transfer from Great Britain was confirmed on Monday.

Tracey has been named to contest both the 800m and 1500m.

A resurgent Yohan Blake — the 2011 men’s 100m champion — leads the men’s sprint team that will see newcomers Oblique Seville and Akeem Blake, while Hansle Parchment is part of the sprint hurdles set-up that looks poised for more fireworks as was the case at the Tokyo Olympics last year when he won the gold medal.

Triple jumper Shanieka Ricketts, the silver medallist in the women’s triple jump in Doha in 2019, missed out on a medal in Tokyo but could redeem herself in Eugene.

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BY PAUL A REID Observer writer

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