By Gary Smith, World-Track
MONACO — The poor performance of Asafa Powell at the Aviva London Grand Prix last Friday, where he finished the 100 metres in a very disappointing sixth place was a result of tiredness, his agent Paul Doyle said on Monday.
The former world record holder clocked 10.26 seconds to finish behind fellow Jamaican countryman and current world record holder Usain Bolt, and the weak outing has been blamed on the preparation before the race.
“[Powell’s] coach (Stephen Francis) has kept the training really heavy on him, so I think in London he was just a little bit tired by the second race and didn’t want to risk any injury,” Doyle told the Jamaica Observer.
“Francis has prepared these guys to be ready for Berlin and you’ve got to remember that Asafa missed out on about seven or eight weeks of training with his ankle injury.
“If it had been a single race in London, then I think we would have seen a much better run out of Asafa, but to go through two rounds with the heavy legs that he had from training was really tough,” Doyle explained.
Powell eased off the gas in the opening round to finish third in 10.19 before losing his undefeated streak at Crystal Palace in final to Bolt, who crossed the line in 9.91 seconds, running into a -1.7m/s headwind.
The reigning world championships bronze medallist, who despite is impressive collection of world records, has yet to win an individual gold medal at a major championships.
He, however, has an Olympic gold medal after running an unforgettable leg on the Jamaican world record breaking 4x100m relay team in Beijing last summer.
His seasonal best of 9.88 will see him starting as one of the contenders for the gold medal at the world championships in Berlin next month. But things will be difficult for Powell, with the likes of Bolt and defending champion Tyson Gay running extremely well and brimming with confidence with victories against him already this season.