Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 17th 2016 Contents sports
tobagotoday.co.tt AUGUST 17 - 23, 2016
RIO DE JANEIRO --- Jamaica s Usain
Bolt stepped into the realms of immor-
tality when he won his third-consecutive
100 metres title in a season s best 9.81
seconds inside the Olympic Stadium here
on Sunday night.
Bolt became the first man to win three
Olympic 100m titles by beating his American
rival Justin Gatlin for his seventh Olympic
gold medal. And if there were any doubts as
to who is the greatest sprinter of all time, the
argument was settled once and for all.
Running out of lane five, Bolt had the sec-
ond-slowest reaction time and was slowly
away from the starting blocks, but once he
got into his stride, the race was all over. He
went past early leader Gatlin and even had
enough time to once again celebrate by hitting
his chest before crossing the line.
His winning time was his slowest of all his
championship victories, and he was still .08-
second faster than Gatlin, who clocked 9.89
seconds. Canadian Andre De Grasse snatched
the bronze medal in 9.91, just ahead Jamaica s
Yohan Blake in fourth with a season s best
of 9.93 seconds.
Bolt had previously won the Olympic 100m
titles in Beijing in 2008 and London in 2012.
His country woman Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce
had failed in her bid to add to her 2008 and
2012 Olympic triumphs in the 24 hours ear-
After the race, approximately 57,000
screaming fans inside the Olympic Stadium
chanted his name --- "Usain Bolt, Usain Bolt"
as the global superstar made his customary
victory lap, saluting the spectators in the
A picture of his mother s image appeared
on the huge television screens and the cheers
grew louder. She appeared just as excited as
Bolt, at 29 years old, is one of the most
recognisable and popular athletes in the world,
and he didn t disappoint his fans.
He was the master of ceremonies probably
for the last time at the Olympic Games. He
orchestrated the celebrations every stop he
made. He even gave Vinicius --- the official
mascot of the Rio Olympics --- a joyride
around the stadium. The writing was on the
wall from the semi-final earlier when Bolt
literally jogged 9.84 seconds. Gatlin had raced
90 metres before easing down in the last 10
metres for 9.94 seconds. The contest was as
good as over then.
Bolt, who is said to be more popular than
Brazilian legend Pele in some quarters, felt
the love from the partisan Brazilian crowd.
They cheered loudly when he stepped onto
the track, but once Gatlin --- twice suspended
for doping violations --- appeared, the boos
reverberated around the stadium.
The world record holder of the 100m (9.58),
200m (19.19) and the 4x100m relay (36.84),
Bolt saluted his fans, took selfies with a few,
hugged others, then gave his signature Light-
ning Bolt pose to raptuous applause and
showed why he is arguably the greatest sports-
"It was brilliant. I didn t go so fast, but
I m so happy I won. I told you guys I was
going to do it," Bolt told journalists before
explaining that the break between the semi-
finals and the finals had been shorter than
usual, which restricted the time for him to
However, in an even more ominous warning
to his rivals, Bolt said he was looking forward
to challenging the world record in the 200m.
"The 200 metres will be the sweetest one,"
he told reporters, while revealing that he was
shocked by the booing in the stadium aimed
"I was surprised by it. It was shocking; the
first time I heard booing in a stadium. How-
ever, I just focused on my job and got it done,"
The search is on for a new general
secretary of the Tobago Football Asso-
ciation (TFA), following the resignation
of Everton Alfred last week.
Alfred resigned due to differences with
TFA executives, TFA president Anthony
Moore said.But a board member of the T&T
Football Association, who wished to remain
anonymous, said Alfred submitted a letter
to new football association president David
John-Williams in which he described Moore
as a dictator. The matter stemmed from a
club that has been seeking re-entry into the
TFA League this season, following their sus-
pension back in 2013 for the use of an
ineligeable player two years ago. According
to Moore, the TFA felt the club should be
accepted as it contained a number of amateur
players seeking development and recreation.
Contacted in reference to the issue, Alfred
said his resignation was the final nail in the
coffin, following a series of mis-steps in the
administration of the TFA. The long-stand-
ing football administrator pointed out that
another executive called it quits because of
the way the TFA was being managed.
"Pertaining to the club seeking re-entry,
I felt that a decision was made long before
the executive could have adjudicated on it,"
"When the letter seeking re-entry came
to the TFA, it was taken to the general council
and then the executives were told about it.
I felt the process in which the decision was
made was wrong and I made it known to
them before I made my exit. I am of the
view that we must always do the right thing,
even if it takes forever or if we must travel
a long and winding road, we must always
stand for what is right."
Also contacted, Moore made it clear that
his interest is to ensure there is development
of the sport and that it serves all the stake-
Former Olympic quarter-miler Ian
Morris is hoping Machel Cedenio can
ride the tide of his fourth place finish in
Sunday s Olympic 400 metres final to
lead Trinidad and Tobago s team to a
4x400 metres relay medal.
"This is our time to win an Olympic Gold
medal so take it. Please do not let this oppor-
tunity go to waste, I am begging you runners,"
Cedenio, 20, ran the race of his life in the
event at the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro
but just could not make it among the medals.
In the process, however, he erased Morris
24-year old record with a smashing 44.01
performance, in a race which was won by
South Africa s Wayne van Niekerk in a new
world record time of 43.03. The previous
record was held by American Michael Johnson,
who clocked 43.18 seconds in Sevilla, Spain,
Cedenio, who ran from lane three, bettered
Morris record of 44.21, which was established
at the Barcelona Games in 1992. Morris just
failed to hold off Kenyan Samson Kitur for
the bronze medal.
Pre-race favourite and defending Grenadian
Olympic champion Kerani James finished
second in 43.76, while American LaShawn
Merritt grabbed the bronze in 43.85, just
ahead of Cedenio.
Cedenio put in his best work at the finish,
closing in on Merritt and James as he chased
down the leaders in the straight, but just
could not pull out that little extra to get among
the medals. Ironically, van Niekerk was the
man Cedenio beat in the semi-final when he
clocked 44.39 seconds.
Before the race Cedenio had said: "I will
need to go below the national record because
there are three men with sub 44 times, and
they are running fast."
In his analysis of the T&T 4x400 team s
chances, Morris explained the United States
team will be dependent on Lashawn Merrit,
who will also be required to perform in the
200 metres and will place the US team under
tremendous pressure, while other main con-
tenders like Bahamas are not at full strength
The former footballer, who made athletics
his career for two decades while contesting
the 200, 400 and 800 metres events, believes
the T&T team is equipped with quarter-milers
who are capable of 44-seconds performances
at any given time.
"We have Machel Cedenio, who is an out-
standing athlete, along with Jarrin Solomon,
Renny Quow, Deon Lendore and of course
Lalonde Gordon, all of whom can produce at
the 400 metres, so our chance is greater than
any other in the world right now," Morris
The 4x 400 metre relays will be the last
on the calendar of events at the Olympics
and may well be the country s only chance
of at a gold medal in that event, Morris said.
He also lashed out at the performances of
some athletes, saying they seem to be running
for themselves and not the country.
"A number of runners, with the exception
of Cedenio, Semoy Hackett, Gordon and
Michelle Lee Ahye, have been going through
the motions at the Olympics," he said.
"These are runners who have benefitted
from the Elite Athletes Funding towards their
preparations, and yet, they don t look anything
like they want to win. I am not talking about
winning medals only, but we must see a
greater effort from them. We need to see a
greater effort from our athletes."
T&T quarter-miler Machel Cedenio crosses the finish line in first place during the Olympic Games semi-final
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