Jamaican king of sprint Usain Bolt, who stunned the world by winning the 100m sprint in 9''58 on Sunday, is hot favourite to win tonight's 200m final and smash his own world record in the process.
AFP - Usain Bolt stayed on course to repeat his Beijing Olympic sprint double at the World Athletics Championships in Berlin on Wednesday after producing an effortless run to coast into the 200m final.
The 22-year-old Jamaican, who set a new world record of 9.58sec in winning the 100m on Sunday, and is also the 200m world record holder (19.58sec), seems to have run out of any real rivals and it is difficult to see him being beaten in Thursday's final, injury or shocking mistake permitting.
"I just try and get through and make it as easy as possible," said Bolt. "I've been training for this for a long time now. I know what I have to do."
The men's 1500m final produced a storming race won in a last-gasp burst by Bahrain's Kenyan-born Yusuf Saad Kamel, emulating his father Billy Konchellah who won two world 800m crowns for Kenya in 1987 and 1991.
"It's amazing to win a world title just like my father," said Kamel, who changed nationality in 2003. "The only thing left for me to do is to beat his times and win more medals and get to the front of my family."
Kamel clocked 3min 35.93sec, with Ethiopian world indoor champion Deresse Mekonnen claiming silver (3:36.01), and defending world champion Bernard Lagat, also Kenyan-born but now competing for the United States, at 0.19sec in bronze.
There was more joy for Jamaica on the track when Brigitte Hylton-Foster won gold and Delloreen Ennis-London got bronze in the women's 100m hurdles. Canada's Priscilla Lopes-Schliep was sandwiched for silver.
South African Caster Semenya won the women's 800m in impressive style on the same day the IAAF, world athletics' governing body, announced that she would undergo tests to have her gender verified.
The 18-year-old kicked with 300 metres to go and was uncatchable down the home stretch to clock a world lead of 1:55.45sec. Defending champion Janeth Jepkosgei of Kenya won silver at 2.48sec, with Briton Jennifer Meadows getting bronze.
But the biggest cheer of the night at an electric Olympic Stadium was reserved for Germany's Robert Harting, who dramatically won the discus gold on his sixth and final throw of 69.43m.
Poland's long-time leader Piotr Malachowski won silver (69.15m) with Estonian Gerd Kanter, the reigning Olympic and world champion, getting bronze with a best of 66.88m.
An all-American duel was set up in the 400m, with both Olympic champion LaShawn Merritt and world champion Jeremy Wariner booking their passage into the final.
Ukraine's Oleksiy Kasyanov sat in pole position after the first day of the men's decathlon on 4,555 points, 43 ahead of Cuban Yunior Diaz, with Trey Hardee just one point further adrift.
Cuban Leonel Suarez, favourite for the 10-sport, two-day event in the absence of Olympic champion Bryan Clay of the United States, had fought back into eighth place on 4,320 points having struggled in the morning session.
Ethiopian world medal hopes were earlier dealt a further blow when Olympic champion and world record holder Tirunesh Dibaba pulled out of the women's 5000m after failing to recover from an ankle injury that had also ruled her out of the 10,000m.
Concerns over Olympic 100m hurdles champion and world record holder Dayron Robles were allayed, however, with the Cuban team confirming he would race in Thursday's semi-finals despite suffering from a muscular injury in his lead left leg.
Date created : 2009-08-20