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Italy's Olympic 100m champion Lamont Marcell Jacobs challenges Usain Bolt to charity race

Italy's Olympic 100m champion Lamont Marcell Jacobs has challenged Usain Bolt to a charity team sprinting contest after the retired Jamaican said he could have won the blue riband race in Tokyo.

Bolt told AFP in an interview last week that it was frustrating to watch the delayed 2020 Games from his home in Jamaica as his male countrymen flopped and Jacobs, a relative unknown before the Olympics, claimed a shock victory.

The 35-year-old Jamaican, the world record holder over 100m with a best of 9.58 seconds set back in 2009, said Jacobs' winning time of 9.80sec in Tokyo was still within his reach despite having hung up his spikes in 2017.

Jacobs, who has not raced since winning the coveted sprint gold, turned to social media on Monday to challenge Bolt, the winner of eight Olympic gold medals and an 11-time world champion.

"You are my hero, so thanks for the hat's off!" said Jacobs, born in the United States to an American father but raised in Italy by his Italian mother.

"But you also said you're sure you'd win, so I'm up for the challenge!

"How about starting with a charity capture the flag? You bring your team and I'll bring mine!"

Capture the flag, or "rubabandiera" as it is known in Italy, is a schoolyard game played by children in which two teams race to capture the other team's flag, located at the team's "base", and bring it safely back to their own base.

(11/23/2021) Views: 54 ⚡AMP
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Tokyo Olympics 100m champion Lamont Marcell Jacobs won't run again until 2022

Olympic 100m champion Lamont Marcell Jacobs has said he will not compete again until next year.

In response to a question on social media about when he would next race, the 26-year-old responded with "2022".

Jacobs followed up his shock 100m victory in Tokyo with another gold as part of Italy's 4x100m relay team.

His manager Marcello Magnani said injury was not a factor in the decision to take a break, but the time off is a preventative measure.

"It is simply that Marcell has given so much this year, all he had, so to insist [on competing] would only mean risking an injury," Magnani added.

European indoor 60m champion Jacobs, who only switched away from long jump in 2018, produced one of the biggest surprises in Tokyo when he won 100m gold in in 9.80 seconds.

It was only in May that he broke the 10-second barrier for the first time.

He was next scheduled to run on August 21 at the Eugene Diamond League meet in the United States.

After that, Jacobs was to appear on September 3 in Brussels and then anticipated to compete on  September 9 in Zurich for the season-ending Diamond League Finals.

(08/13/2021) Views: 145 ⚡AMP
by BBC News
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision. ...

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Hassan and Warner among Tokyo 2020 Closing Ceremony flag bearers

More than 50 athletes from the sport of athletics will carry the flags for their nation at the Closing Ceremony of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on Sunday (8).

Ten days of competition, which included three world records, 12 Olympic records and 28 area records, came to a close with the men’s marathon on Sunday morning, with Kenya’s marathon great Eliud Kipchoge retaining his title.

Now his fellow Olympic gold medallists Sifan Hassan, Damian Warner, Pedro Pichardo and Peruth Chemutai will be among the flag bearers returning to Tokyo's Olympic Stadium as the 2020 Games come to a close.

For Hassan, the moment will cap an incredible performance in Tokyo, with the Dutch star having claimed an unprecedented medal treble of 5000m and 10,000m golds plus 1500m bronze over nine days.

“I am so happy and I cried during the medal ceremony,” the 28-year-old said after her 10,000m triumph on Saturday. “I actually realised that I am done, the Games are over.”

Warner’s victory had been secured on Thursday, when he became just the fourth man in history to break the 9000-point barrier to win the decathlon title. The Canadian’s 9018-point tally was one of the 12 Olympic records set at the Tokyo Games.

Portugal’s Pichardo, meanwhile, leapt to the triple jump title, setting one of the 151 national records achieved at these Olympics with his winning mark of 17.98m. In that same competition, the bronze medallist was world indoor record-holder Hugues Fabrice Zango and as a result, Burkina Faso became the 100th country to have won an Olympic medal in athletics.

For Chemutai, victory came in the 3000m steeplechase. Other medallists in Tokyo carrying their nation’s flag will be Ethiopia’s Selemon Barega, Grenada’s Kirani James, Kenya’s Timothy Cheruiyot and New Zealand’s Valerie Adams.

With the 2020 Games delayed a year due to the pandemic, athletes and fans now have only three years to wait until Olympic action returns in Paris in 2024.

Athletics flag bearers at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Closing Ceremony

Listed in the order in which they will march. List correct at time of publication and may be subject to change.

Antigua and Barbuda (ANT) - Cejhae Greene (men’s 100m)

Andorra (AND) - Pol Moya (men’s 800m)

Italy (ITA) - Lamont Marcell Jacobs (men’s 100m and 4x100m)

Uganda (UGA) - Peruth Chemutai (women’s 3000m steeplechase)

Uruguay (URU) - Maria Pia Fernandez (women’s 1500m)

Ecuador (ECU) - Glenda Morejón (women’s 20km race walk)

Estonia (EST) - Maicel Uibo (decathlon)

Eswatini (SWZ) - Sibusiso Matsenjwa (men’s 200m)

Ethiopia (ETH) - Selemon Barega (10,000m)

Eritrea (ERI) - Nazret Weldu (women’s marathon)

Netherlands (NED) - Sifan Hassan (1500m, 5000m and 10,000m)

Guyana (GUY) - Emanuel Archibald (men’s 100m)

Canada (CAN) - Damian Warner (decathlon)

Gambia (GAM) - Ebrima Camara (men’s 100m)

Cuba (CUB) - Zurian Hechavarría (women’s 400m hurdles and 4x400m)

Grenada (GRN) - Kirani James (men’s 400m)

Kenya (KEN) - Timothy Cheruiyot (men’s 1500m)

Cote d'Ivoire (CIV) - Marie-Josee Ta Lou (women’s 100m and 200m)

Costa Rica (CRC) - Noelia Vargas (women’s 20km race walk)

Comoros (COM) - Fadane Hamadi (men’s 110m hurdles)

Congo (CGO) - Gilles Anthony Afoumba (men’s 400m)

Zambia (ZAM) - Sydney Siame (men’s 200m)

Djibouti (DJI) - Souhra Ali Mohamed (women’s 1500m)

Jamaica (JAM) - Demish Gaye (men’s 400m and 4x400m)

Sri Lanka (SRI) - Yupun Abeykoon Mudiyanselage (men’s 100m)

Saint Lucia (LCA) - Levern Spencer (women’s high jump)

Chinese Taipei (TPE) - Chen Chieh (men’s 400m hurdles)

United Republic of Tanzania (TAN) - Male Alphonce Felix Simbu (men’s marathon)

Czech Republic (CZE) Jakub Vadlejch (men’s javelin)

People's Republic of China (CHN) - Su Bingtian (men’s 100m and 4x100m)

Tuvalu (TUV) - Karalo Hepoiteloto Maibuca (men’s 100m)

Dominica (DMA) - Thea Lafond (women’s triple jump)

Trinidad and Tobago (TTO) - Andwuelle Wright (men’s long jump)

Namibia (NAM) - Beatrice Masilingi (women’s 200m)

New Zealand (NZL) - Valerie Adams (shot put)

Haiti (HAI) - Mulern Jean (women’s 100m hurdles)

Pakistan (PAK) - Arshad Nadeem (men’s javelin)

Panama (PAN) - Jorge Castelblanco (men’s marathon)

Bahamas (BAH) - Megan Moss (women’s 4x400m)

Paraguay (PAR) - Derlys Ayala (men’s marathon)

Barbados (BAR) - Tia-Adana Belle (women’s 400m hurdles)

American Samoa (ASA) - Nathan Crumpton (men’s 100m)

Virgin Islands, US (ISV) - Eddie Vovett (men’s 110m hurdles)

Bosnia and Herzegovina (BIH) - Amel Tuka (men’s 800m)

Botswana (BOT) - Anthony Pasela (men’s 4x400m)

Bolivia (BOL) - Angela Castro (women’s 20km race walk)

Portugal (POR) - Pedro Pichardo (men’s triple jump)

Honduras (HON) - Ivan Zarco Alvarez (men’s marathon)

South Africa (RSA) - Anaso Jobodwana (men’s 200m)

South Sudan (SSD) - Abraham Guem (men’s 1500m)

Republic of Moldova (MDA) - Andrian Mardare (men’s javelin)

Luxembourg (LUX) - Bob Bertemes (men’s shot put)

Rwanda (RWA) - John Hakizimana (men’s marathon)

Lesotho (LES) - Neheng Khatala (women’s marathon)

United States of America (USA) - Kara Winger (women’s javelin)

(08/08/2021) Views: 231 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Jacobs stuns with Olympic 100m win as no one saw this coming

Italy’s Lamont Marcell Jacobs, a former long jumper appearing in his first Olympics, stunned the field on Sunday (1) to claim the first men’s 100m gold medal of the post-Usain Bolt era.

Overlooked as a serious medal contender, the 26-year-old Jacobs clocked a European record of 9.80 to win Italy’s first ever Olympic 100m gold and claim the unofficial title of the world’s fastest man.

The Italian pulled in front after 60 meters and glanced to his right as he crossed the line in front of the USA's Fred Kerley, who took silver in a personal best 9.84, and Canada’s Andre De Grasse, who earned his second consecutive bronze in a PB of 9.89.

Three other runners also ran sub-10 seconds in the final: South Africa’s Akani Simbine finished fourth in 9.93, the USA's Ronnie Baker was fifth in 9.95 and China’s Su Bingtian was sixth in 9.98.

The pre-Olympic favorite, US champion and world-leader Trayvon Bromell, failed to qualify for the final.

In a race with no obvious favourites, Jacobs was still a major surprise.

The bald-headed, barrel-chested Italian did not come completely out of nowhere. He is the European indoor 60m champion and broke the Italian 100m record in May with a time of 9.95. But he chose the right time and place to announce himself on the world’s biggest stage.

“It’s a dream, it’s fantastic,” Jacobs said. “Maybe tomorrow I can imagine what people are saying, but today it is incredible.”

It was the first time since 2004 that gold in the marque event was won by someone other than Bolt, the Jamaican great who swept three consecutive 100m titles in Beijing, London and Rio de Janeiro, as well as three straight 200m crowns.

Few would have predicted that the man to succeed Bolt on the top podium would be Jacobs, who became the first European to win the 100m at the Olympics since Britain’s Linford Christie in Barcelona in 1992.

Even his race rivals didn’t see Jacobs as much of a threat.

“I really didn’t know anything about him,” Kerley said.

De Grasse added: “I didn't expect that. I thought my main competition would have been the Americans, but definitely he came to play. He executed. He did his thing so congrats to him."

Jacobs is the first Italian to win a sprint event since Pietro Mennea took gold in the men’s 200m in 1980. And his time? The fastest in the men’s 100m by an athlete not from the US or Jamaica.

Jacobs’ victory capped a golden night for Italy, coming minutes after another Italian, Gianmarco Tamberi, shared gold in the men’s high jump with Qatar’s Mutaz Essa Barshim. The two Italians embraced and celebrated together on the track.

“Being here together is something spectacular," Jacobs said. “I believe in him and I believed in myself.”

Jacobs’ story may not be known by the general public: He was born in El Paso, Texas, to an American father and Italian mother. He moved to Italy with his mother when he was one-year-old. Jacobs started out as a long jumper but, after a series of injuries, he changed to the sprints.

Signs that something special was about to happen in the final came earlier during the semifinals, which produced some stunning results, including a record-breaking heat in which three men ran under 9.85.

Su blazed to victory in the third heat in an Asian record 9.83 to become the first Chinese sprinter to reach an Olympic 100m final. Baker finished second with a personal best 9.83 and Jacobs was third in a European record 9.84. For good measure, Simbine clocked 9.90 to finish fourth in that heat.

Only twice previously had three men gone inside 9.85 in the same 100m race – the Olympic final in 2012 and the 2009 World Championships final in 2009.

Kerley (9.96) and Britain’s Zharnel Hughes (9.98) won the other two semifinals. Hughes was disqualified from the final after a false start.

Bromell missed out after finishing third in his heat in 10 seconds flat. He got off to a quick start and took the early lead but never found a second gear and was passed in the final metres by Nigeria’s Enoch Adegoke and Hughes.

There were signs that Bromell was not in medal-winning form a day earlier when he finished only fourth in his first-round heat in 10.05.

It was a stunning fall for Bromell, who had made a remarkable comeback to the top of the sport after tearing his achilles during the 4x100m relay at the 2016 Rio Games and being carried off the track in a wheelchair.

After two years out of the sport, Bromell worked his way back and established himself as the world’s top 100m sprinter. He clocked a world-leading 9.77 in June, the seventh-fastest time in history, then sealed his spot in Tokyo by winning the 100m at the US Olympic Trials in 9.80.

But since then he has not been his dominant self. Bromell’s 14-race winning streak was snapped when he finished fifth in Monaco in June in 10.01, his first race in Europe since 2016. He bounced back four days later with a victory in Gateshead, England, in 9.98 but still looked far from his best.

“I want to say thank you to everyone who's been with me on this journey,” Bromell said on Twitter on Sunday after failing to reach the Olympic final. “Lord knows how much I wanted to be in that final. BUT I walk away with a smile because I know I showed many that after four years out, you can still fight and make dreams come true.”

The day also marked the end of the Olympic career of Jamaica’s 31-year-old Yohan Blake, the 2011 world 100m champion who won silver at the 2012 Olympics and is a two-time Olympic relay gold medallist. Blake finished sixth in his semi-final in 10.14.

“Definitely my last Olympics,” Blake said. “You know track is not easy. I won't be ungrateful. I've gained a lot. I'm still the second fastest man in history, no one can take that away from me.”

(08/01/2021) Views: 228 ⚡AMP
by World Athletics
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Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Fifty-six years after having organized the Olympic Games, the Japanese capital will be hosting a Summer edition for the second time, originally scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, the games were postponed due to coronavirus outbreak, the postponed Tokyo Olympics will be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021, according to the International Olympic Committee decision. ...

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Holly Archer wins European 1500m silver after being reinstated on appeal

British athletes added three more medals at the European Indoor Championships in Poland on Saturday evening.

The most dramatic came in the women’s 1500 metres, where Holly Archer celebrated winning silver only to be disqualified and then reinstated on appeal by the British team.

There was pushing and shoving throughout a scrappy race but Cambridge athlete Archer was singled out alongside Spain’s Agueda Munoz, who was also penalised.

A counter appeal was eventually rejected, and Archer said: “That was the longest wait ever. It was supposed to be half an hour but it turned into three hours. I feel absolutely delighted. To come so close and then get it taken away, I’ve been on a roller coaster, but I’m really happy to finally get that silver.”

British team captain Jodie Williams and pole vaulter Holly Bradshaw both collected bronze medals.

Williams has made the move up from the shorter sprints to 400m and was rewarded with her first individual medal at a major event since 2014 behind exciting young Dutch winner Femke Bol.

Williams, 27, ran a personal best of 51.73 seconds, and said afterwards: “It’s crazy. I came here to do a job and it’s job done. Last time I came to European Indoors I got fourth so I had to upgrade that.

I’m really happy. I got a bit boxed in, so I got a bit worried for a second. I knew I could do it. I just dug in and I’m really glad.”

Bradshaw had targeted gold but failed with her three attempts at 4.70m and had to settle for joint third alongside Belarusian Iryna Zhuk behind Swiss winner Angelica Moser and Tina Sutej of Slovenia.

The 29-year-old said: “You can’t sniff at a European Indoor medal, but I’m incredibly disappointed. I felt great. The other girls handled their jumps really well and I just didn’t quite jump as well today.

“It’s been one of my best indoor campaigns ever. Of course it’s disappointing to finish like that but, on the whole, I’ve made some really good progress and stepped it up a notch and I feel like a completely different athlete.”

Britain’s first medals of the event came on Friday in the women’s 3,000m with gold for Amy-Eloise Markovc and bronze for Verity Ockenden.

There is a strong possibility of more female success in the final of the 800m after the young trio of Keely Hodgkinson, Isabelle Boffey and Ellie Baker all qualified for the final.

Baker said: “I’m so happy. It just shows how dominant our GB middle distance girls are. I’m so proud of them as well as myself. I can’t wait for us to put on a show for everyone tomorrow.”

Jamie Webb won his semi-final in the men’s event to secure his progress but team-mate Guy Learmonth missed out.

Andrew Robertson was disappointed to miss out on a medal in the men’s 60m final, finishing fourth in a slower time than he ran in both the heats and semi-finals. Italy’s Lamont Marcell Jacobs was a clear winner in a world-leading 6.47secs.

Robertson said: “It’s very disappointing. I’m getting to the stage where I should be running low 6.50s consistently. Jacobs running 6.47s is a fantastic time, but I should be at least challenging him with the way I’ve been running. It wasn’t a good performance tonight.”

Scotsman Andy Butchart looked impressive in qualifying for the final of the 3,000m, winning his heat in the fastest time, while Jack Rowe also made it through.

Andrew Pozzi carries strong British hopes of a medal as the reigning world indoor champion in the 60m hurdles and is looking to regain the title he won in 2017.

He stormed through the first of five heats in 7.52s, the joint-fastest time of the morning, and said afterwards: “It was a really good time. I had a great reaction from the blocks, which I’ve been missing from the indoor season, so that was really encouraging.”

In the women’s event, there were good runs from sisters Cindy Sember and Tiffany Porter, who safely qualified for the semi-finals. Sember’s time of 7.99s was her fastest since 2017 while Porter clocked 8.04s.

(03/07/2021) Views: 261 ⚡AMP
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European Athletics Indoor Championships

European Athletics Indoor Championships

Witness six sessions of action-packed sport over three days of intense competition as some of the best athletes in the world compete for prestigious European titles. Don’t miss the opportunity to witness this thrilling event and get closer to the action. ...

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