August 29, 2011 09:42
Despite Jamaican Usain Bolt's disappointing blunder in the men's 100-m final at the IAAF World Championships in Daegu on Sunday, the race is far from over for the world's fastest man.
Bolt, who was disqualified from the Worlds marquee event for a false start, still has two more races to run -- the 200 m on Saturday and the 400-m relay on Sunday, the final day of competition.
He seized gold in both disciplines at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2009 IAAF World Championships in Berlin. Now part of his reputation hinges on his ability to come back from Sunday's fall from grace and claim the two titles that are still within his grasp.
As the 200 m is his favorite event, this should not be too much to expect from the man who is, if anything, always full of surprises. At the last Summer Games in China, Bolt shattered American Michael Johnson's 12-year-old world record of 19.32 seconds by 0.02 seconds. He then beat his own record one year later by clocking 19.19 seconds at the 2009 Worlds.
Walter Dix of the U.S., the 2008 Olympic bronze medalist in the 200 m and runner-up in the 100 m on Sunday, is regarded as Bolt's biggest threat. Dix' personal best in the 200 m is 19.69 seconds, which he set in 2007.
As less importance is placed on how quickly runners get out of the blocks in the 200 m compared to the 100 m, Bolt's chances of winning are high if he can overcome the harmful psychological effects of Sunday's mistake.
Jamaica is also a huge favorite in the men's 400-m relay. Although it is uncertain whether Asafa Powell will be fit to run due to injury, the Caribbean nation has so much depth in field -- including the new 100-m world champion Yohan Blake, Nesta Carter and Michael Frater -- that it will surely be the bookie's favorite. The U.S. is a contender for the title, but Jamaica's "Dream Team" will be tough to dislodge.
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