LONDON (Sporting Alert) — The world’s fastest man Usain Bolt won the men’s 100m dash at the Sainsbury’s Anniversary Games – 11th IAAF Diamond League Meeting this season – inside the Olympic Stadium.
The Jamaican, after being introduced early to the fan on top of a special ride on a rocket ship, returned to sizzle to 9.85seconds, coming back from a very poor start.
It was Bolt’s fastest time of season, improving on his previous seasonal best of 9.94.
“I am so excited and happy to be here,” he said after his win. “It’s always a wonderful experience to run in London.
“My start wasn’t the best, but it’s not the best part of my race so it will get better with more races.”
American Micheal Rodgers got off to brilliant start but he was chased down by the Olympic champion and had to settle for second in 9.98, with Jamaica’s Nesta Carter taking third in 9.99.
The well anticipated clash between Bolt and Great Britain’s No. 1 James Dasaolu was supposed to be one of the highlights of the first day, but the latter was forced to pull out just before race time because of a hip flexor problem.
Bolt’s training partner Warren Weir, the Olympic bronze medalist, breezes to 19.89 seconds to win the men’s 200m ahead of fellow countryman and training partner Jason Young, who posted 19.99. American Wallace Spearmon raced from the back for third in 20.18.
Olympic champion Kirani James won the men’s 400m very comfortably, after pulling away from the field over the closing metres to win in 44.65secs.
The Grenadian star beat American Tony McQuay, who ran 45.09 and Jonathan Borlée of Belgium, 45.14.
American star, Brenda Martinez set a meeting record to dominate the women’s 800m to win in 1:58.19, which is just outside her seasonal and personal best of 1:58.18.
Martinez’s performance was a sign that she intends to challenge for medals at the IAAF World Championships in Moscow, Russia, next month.
Elena Mirela Lavric of Romania was second in 1:59.79, while American Ajee Wilson, who has run under two-minutes already this season, was third in 2:00.20.
Nick Symmonds of USA paced home a 1-2-3 in the men’s race – running 1:43.67 for first to beat U.S. champion Duane Solomon (1:44.12) and Brandon Johnson (1:44.19).
In the women’s 400m hurdles world-leader Zuzana Hejnova of the Czech Republic timed her kick to perfection to take down Great Britain’s Perri Shakes-Drayton on her way to setting a new personal and world-leading time of 53.07secs.
Hejnova chased down Shakes-Drayton in the final 50 metres to take a dominating victory and signal her ambition to win the gold medal at the world championships.
Shakes-Drayton, who said she didn’t go out too hard, despite getting run down, was second in a personal best time of 53.67, while American Georganne Moline finished third in 54.32.
“It was a good race and I will get better and better,” the Briton star said. “No I didn’t get off too fast.
“I ran a personal best so what more can I ask for.”
In a highly contested women’s 3000m, Shannon Rowbury led home an American 1-2-3 finish with a world-leading time of 8:41.46. Behind her were several personal bests, as fellow countrywomen Molly Huddle was second in personal best of 8:42.64, while third went to Gabriele Anderson and she finished in a personal best of 8:42.99.
Another American Jordan Hasay was fifth in with also a PB of 8:46.89.
In the women’s 1500m young American Mary Cain, a training partner of Hasay, Mo Farah and Galen Rupp under the guidance of Alberto Salazar, was well beaten into with Kenya’s Laura Kuria taking first in a slow time of 4:08.77.
Cain looked very nervous at the start of race and it seems as though it affected her race tactics.
In action in the field, Cuba’s Olympic silver medallist Yarisley Silva set a new Diamond League record on 4.83m to beat Olympic champion and favourite Jenn Suhr, who was stalled at 4.73m. She did try her luck at 4.83m and twice at 4.88m, but failed on all three occasions.
Brazil’s Fabiana Murer was third with a clearance of 4.63m.
Piotr Małachowski produced a mark of 67.35m to win the men’s discus throw, with second going to Martin Wierig of Germany with a distant of 66.60m and third to Gerd Kanter of Estonia, with 66.29m.
Ukrainian Bohdan Bondarenko took the men’s high jump with a clearance of 2.38m, Koneva Yekaterina of Russia won the women’s triple jump with 14.52 over Jamaica’s Kimberly Williams (14.38m).