RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil – Coach Stephen Francis has revealed that Elaine Thompson competed with a “damaged” hamstring at the Jamaica Olympic Championships last month.
Thompson, the 2015 IAAF World Championships 200m silver medallist from Beijing, was forced to withdraw from the JAAA Trials in the latter part of the championships due to a hamstring problem, but not before blasting to a world-leading 10.70 seconds to win the women’s 100m title.
It certainly looked as though the 24-year-old was holding something back, but no one thought she pulled back due to fitness concerns.
Recent training sessions have given the biggest indication that Thompson is heading in the right direction ahead of the track and field schedule of Rio 2016, which gets under way next week.
The Jamaican sprint star who arrived in the Games city on Monday with her MVP Track Club teammates, had no worries zipping through her opening training session in Brazil Tuesday morning, with her coach noting that she is in good shape.
Francis also revealed the kind of shape one of his star pupils was in prior to the JAAA Trials.
“She damaged her hamstring from before the trials,” the guru sprint coach said.
“She was cautious and she managed to get through the 100m with it.”
Francis added that Thompson tried to ease through the 200m as well, but the hamstring muscle “began to feel worse” so they decided to pull out of the championships and filed for a medical exemption.
“It then began to feel worse and we decided that the 200m was not that important at that point in time,” Francis explained.
“If she was selected to run then she would, if she is in good shape and not hurting and if not then she would just run the 100m,” he added.
Thompson, along with fellow MVP training partner Janieve Russell, who missed the JAAA Trials with a foot problem, will both undergo an ultra-sound medical test under the watchful eyes of the country’s medical panel on Aug. 8.
The coaching staff will then make the final decision on whether they are fit enough to compete at the same level before the time of their respective injuries.