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Elaine Thompson-Herah sprints to 100m gold in Jamaican clean sweep

·2 min read
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Elaine Thompson-Herah retained her title as the Olympic 100m champion as she led home a Jamaican clean sweep of the medals.

Thompson-Herah, who had suffered some injury-ravaged years since that Rio de Janeiro gold, set an Olympic record time of 10.61seconds to take the gold, the second quickest time in history for the distance. Only Florence Griffith Joyner has ever run faster.

The double Olympic champion said: “I’ve been struggling with my injury back and forth. There was a 10.5 out there but because I was so excited to celebrate early I got a 10.6.”

The 29-year-old has habitually struggled with her starts but had a flyer out of the blocks to put pressure on her teammate Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce, with whom she has a frosty relationship.

Thompson-Herah pulled clear of Fraser-Pryce, who had been bidding to become the first woman in history to win Olympic 100m gold at the age of 34, in the dying stages of the race as Shericka Jackson won the bronze.

After missing out on gold, Fraser-Pryce, who returned to the sport after the birth of her son in 2017, said: “It wasn’t the best start because I had a stumble about the third step but I never recovered from it.

“I’m grateful to come out here. I’m excited as a mother and my fourth Olympic Games to be able to stand on the podium. I hope mothers understand there’s so much more we can achieve.

Dina Asher-Smith had failed to qualify for the final after finishing third in her semi-final in a time of 11.05s but Darryl Neita snuck into the final as a fastest loser.

Neita, who finished in last place in the final in a time of 11.12s, said: “It’s great to make the Olympic final and I came here with that ambition. This performance is not ideal for me but it’s still an amazing performance nonetheless. This is where I belong, there’s no limits.”

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