World Athletics 2011: Usain Bolt eases into 200m final
ATHLETICS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS 2011
- Venue: Daegu, South Korea
- Date: 27 August - 4 September
Coverage: BBC Radio 5 live, 5 live sports extra and online (UK only), daily video highlights on BBC Sport website (UK only); live text commentaries; watch live on Channel 4
Jamaica's Usain Bolt won his semi-final in style to qualify for the 200m final at the World Championships in Daegu.
The defending champion and world record holder - who lost his 100m crown on Sunday after a false start - easily took his semi-final in 20.31 seconds.
"I just wanted to show the world I'd got back on my feet," Bolt told BBC Radio 5 live sports extra.
Jamaica's Veronica Campbell-Brown stormed to World 200m gold, beating Carmelita Jeter and Allyson Felix.
A blistering start from the 29-year-old left her more fancied rivals trailing, leading favourite Jeter and double world champion Felix off the bend and then holding on as her two American rivals closed to win in a season's best of 22.22 seconds.
BOLT ON 100m DISQUALIFICATION
"It was my fault, I can't blame anybody else. The first night I just ran things through my head, trying to figure out where I went wrong, but otherwise I've just been sitting, talking to my friends and laughing. I'm not going to blame anybody for anything. He [Yohan Blake] moved a little bit but it was up to me to stay in my blocks. It's tempting to stay in the blocks for as long as possible but I'm going to try not to"
For the superstitious in Korea it continued the infamous "cover curse" that has dogged those athletes who have been on the front of the daily programme here.
Usain Bolt, Yelena Isinbeyeva and Dayron Robles all lost in disastrous fashion after being featured on the cover, and the organisers' decision to put both Jeter and Felix on Friday's programme means that strange sequence continues.
European champion Christophe Lemaitre of France, meanwhile, was the quickest qualifier in the men's 200m, recording a time of 20.19 - while Briton Christian Malcolm failed to reach the final after finishing fifth in his heat.
Earlier in the week Bolt's coach Glen Mills insisted the three-time Olympic gold medallist ' would not change ' his showman-like style - despite criticism suggesting his pre-race antics reflected a lack of focus ahead of the 100m final, where he was disqualified.
Tom Fordyce's blog
Darren Campbell on false-starts
“When you're primed to react, it only takes the slightest hint of movement to make you jump”
And the 200m world record holder did not disappoint, electrifying the crown in Daegu with his traditional exuberant expressions towards those seated in the stadium and watching on television.
"The Koreans are showing me a lot of love," reflected Bolt on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra.
The Jamaican found himself clear of his opponents by the straight and, glancing left and right, eased through the closing metres to finish ahead of Norway's Jaysuma Saidy Ndure who crossed in a time of 20.50.
"My race was all about trying to expend as less [sic] energy as possible. That's what I tried to do," Bolt added.
200m final line-up:
- 20.17 - Christophe Lemaitre (FRA)
- 20.31 - Usain Bolt (JAM)
- 20.32 - Nickel Ashmeade (JAM)
- 20.37 - Walter Dix (USA)
- 20.50 - Jaysuma Ndure (NOR)
- 20.52 - Alonso Edward (PAN)
- 20.54 - Bruno de Barros (BRA)
- 20.56 - Rondel Sorrillo (TRI)
American Walter Dix won the third semi-final in 20.37 to qualify fourth quickest, with Nickel Ashmeade of Jamaica just ahead with a time of 20.32.
"There won't be anything special at this championships because there is too much breeze in this stadium. I know what shape I'm in at the moment," reflected Bolt.
The 200m final will take place at 1320 BST on Saturday.