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Merritt lights up sprinters' night

BRUSSELS, September 8, 2012, Reuters: 22:30 IST
Oly­mpic champion Aries Merritt of the United States broke the world record in the 110 metres hurdles while Jamaicans Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake won their sprints in the final Diamond League meet of the season on Friday.

As reported briefly on Saturday, Merritt clocked 12.80 seconds, beating the mark of 12.87 set in 2008 by Cuban Dayron Robles, achieving a season-long obsession in his last race of 2012.

"My vision was, if I did break the world record, to run 12.85. 12.85 is all over my everything. It's in my email, it's the password for my phone," he said.

The 27-year-old, who has talked in recent weeks of his desire to break the record, has dominated the event this year, with the most sub-12.95 seconds performances in a single season.
"I was just trying so hard that I thought 'I can't do it'," he continued, adding he had put the world record out of his mind before Friday's race.

Triple Olympic champion Bolt, who shattered the 200 metres meet record at the previous Diamond League event in Zurich, pulled away towards the end of the 100, crossing the line in 9.86 seconds which is a modest time for him. "I told my coach I felt lazy and drained," Bolt told reporters. "I'm just happy as I'm injury-free."

Compatriot Blake, who took silver twice behind Bolt in the sprints at this year's London Olympics and clinched gold in the 4x100 relay, easily won the 200 metres after establishing a big lead on the bend. Blake won in 19.54 seconds, the third fastest time this year.

Results: Men: 100M: Usain Bolt (Jamaica) 9.86 seconds, 1; Nesta Carter (Jamaica) 9.96, 2; Kemar Bailey-Cole (Jamaica) 9.97, 3. 200M: Yohan Blake (Jamaica) 19.54, 1; Jason Young (Jamaica) 19.92, 2; Christophe Lemaitre (France) 20.17, 3.
400M: Kevin Borlee (Belgium) 44.75 seconds, 1; Jonathan Borlee (Belgium) 45.02, 2; Lalonde Gordon (Trinidad and Tobago) 45.13, 3. 1500M: Silas Kiplagat (Kenya) 3:31.98, 1; Mekonnen Gebremedhin (Ethiopia) 3:32.10, 2; Bethwell Birgen (Kenya) 3:32.24, 3. 10000M: Emmanuel Kipkemei Bett (Kenya) 26:51.16, 1; Vincent Kiprop Chepkok (Kenya) 26:51.68, 2; Kennet Kipkemoi (Kenya) 26:52.65, 3. 110M hurdles: Aries Merritt (US) 12.80 (World record) 1; Jason Richardson (US) 13.05, 2; Hansle Parchment (Jamaica) 13.14, 3. 3000M steeplechase: Brimin Kiprop Kipruto (Kenya) 8:03.11, 1; Conseslus Kipruto (Kenya) 8:03.70, 2; Paul Kipsiele Koech (Kenya) 8:04.01, 3. Long jump: Aleksandr Menkov (Russia) 8.29 metres, 1; Sergey Morgunov (Russia) 8.04, 2; Godfrey Khotso Mokoena (South Africa) 8.03, 3. Discus: Gerd Kanter (Estonia) 66.84 metres, 1; Martin Wierig (Germany) 66.05, 2; Virgilijus Alekna (Lithuania) 65.78, 3.

Women: 

200M: Myriam Soumare (France) 22.63 seconds, 1; Anneisha McLaughlin (Jamaica) 22.70, 2; ChaRonda Williams (US) 22.74, 3. 800M: Francine Niyonsaba (Burundi) 1:56.59, 1; Pamela Jelimo (Kenya) 1:57.24, 2; Mariya Savinova (Russia) 1:59.05, 3. 5000M: Vivian Jepkemoi Cheruiyot (Kenya) 14:46.01, 1; Mercy Cherono (Kenya) 14:47.18, 2; Viola Jelagat Kibiwot (Kenya) 14:47.88, 3. 400M hurdles: Kaliese Spencer (Jamaica) 53.69 seconds, 1; Perri Shakes-Drayton (Britain) 53.89, 2; Zuzana Hejnova (Czech Republic) 54.09, 3. High jump: Svetlana Shkolina (Russia) 2.00 metres, 1; Anna Chicherova (Russia) 1.95, 2; Eleriin Haas (Estonia) 1.92, 3. Pole vault: Silke Spiegelburg (Germany) 4.75 metres, 1; Fabiana Murer (Brazil) 4.65, 2; Anastasia Savchenko (Russia) 4.55, 3. Triple jump: Olga Rypakova (Kazakhstan) 14.72 metres, 1; Olha Saladuha (Ukraine) 14.40, 2; Marija Sestak (Slovenia) 14.10, 3. Javelin: Barbora Spotakova (Czech Republic) 66.91 metres, 1; Sunette Viljoen (South Africa) 65.33, 2; Vira Rebryk (Ukraine) 64.52, 3.

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