Monday, Mar 18, 2019

Yohan Blake defeated as South African springs shock victory in 100m final

Yohan Blake defeated as South African springs shock victory in 100m final
09 Apr

He's got two Olympic and two World Championship golds and is second only to Usain Bolt as the fastest sprinter in athletics history, but that impressive pedigree proved no use for Yohan Blake in the 100-meter Commonwealth Games final on Monday.

Instead the comparatively unknown South African sprinter Akani Simbine stunned the field to take gold.

Jamaican Blake was slow out of the blocks leaving the path clear for the 24-year-old Simbine to claim the biggest title of his career to date in 10.03 seconds.

Blake, who has a personal best of 9.69 seconds for the distance, had to settle for bronze, behind another South African, Henricho Bruintjies, who took silver.

While athletics has firmly entered the post-Bolt era, the eight-time Olympic champion was still keeping a keen eye on things, tweeting his congratulations to Simbine, adding a message of support to former teammate Blake: "Keep putting in the work. You know your journey."

In a sporting discipline so heavily reliant on confidence, Simbine said he never doubted his ability to win the 100m.

"I came here wanting to be on the podium. I believed in myself, that I could get the gold medal.

"The 100m is an event of who's got the biggest ego and who can handle the ego the best. I didn't focus on what they were all talking about. I just focused on myself."

Blake pointed to his poor start as the reason behind his failure to live up to his reputation as favorite.

"I've been feeling great but I was stumbling and I just couldn't recover from it. I got up running but I couldn't catch them. I'm a bit disappointed. I was supposed to take this very easily. It was never meant to be I guess."

After clocking the fastest 100m semifinal time, Blake had installed himself as favorite to take gold, but he must now turn his attention to the 200m final, which takes place on Thursday.

In the women's 100m final, Michelle-Lee Ahye claimed Trinidad and Tobago's first ever Commonwealth Games gold, finishing ahead of Jamaica's Christania Williams and Gayon Evans in silver and bronze respectively.

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