Bolt steers Jamaica to easy win in heats

Bolt steers Jamaica to easy win in heats

Kenya secure 1-2-3 in 3000M steeplechase

Bolt steers Jamaica to easy win in heats

Six-times Olympic champion Usain Bolt steered Jamaica to a comfortable victory in their 4x100 metres relay heat in front of an expectant crowd at the Commonwealth Games on Friday.

The towering sprinter, an eight-times world champion, ran the final leg as Jamaica easily qualified for Saturday's final in a time of 38.99 seconds ahead of Nigeria.

"I was looking forward to coming out here and showing the people that I'm here to have fun, and I'm here to compete and give my best," Bolt told reporters after making his first ever Commonwealth Games appearance.

"I felt sluggish because it was my first race of the season and I knew it was going to take me time to get into my rhythm, but otherwise it felt okay.

"I'm just happy to be part of the relay team and be at the Commonwealth Games. For me it's always important coming out here and competing with my team, (important to) feel the vibes, enjoy, laugh, have fun, and just to be one."

With the likes of double Olympic champion Mo Farah and Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake, who won a relay gold and two silvers at the London 2012 Olympics, having to pull out injured, the quality of competition has been called into question.

His appearance at the Games was in danger of turning sour earlier in the week when The Times newspaper ran an interview with Bolt in which he was quoted criticising the Games.
The sprinter denied he had made the comments and there were no signs of any ill feeling towards the Jamaican as he posed and postured before an adoring crowd, providing the moment the Games, and its organisers, had been waiting for.

Bolt anchored the Jamaica team of Kimmari Roach, Julian Forte and Nickel Ashmeade, who won 100 bronze in the sprint on Monday, to an easy victory.

Bolt has chosen to compete in just the relay event at Glasgow 2014 and goes in search of his first Commonwealth medal to add to his burgeoning collection in the final.

Another Olympic champion, Australian Sally Pearson, stormed to victory in the defence of her 100 hurdles title in a time of 12.67 seconds, ahead of England's Tiffany Porter and Canadian Angela Whyte.

Kenya secured a 1-2-3 in the men's 3000 steeplechase with Jonathan Ndiku winning in a Games record time of eight minutes 10.44 seconds ahead of Jairus Birech and Ezekiel Kemboi Cheboi.

Their compatriot Eunice Sum followed with another gold by romping to victory in the women's 800 final.

A thrilling finish to the men's 10,000 saw Uganda's Moses Kipsiro narrowly retain the title he won in Delhi, while Steven Lewis won pole vault gold for England, adding to the silver he claimed in Delhi and the bronze he won in Melbourne in 2006.

Australia's Eleanor Patterson won the women's high jump gold while her compatriot Dani Samuels took the women's discus title.

Meanwhile, the Indian women’s 4x100M relay team of Sharadha Narayan, Asha Roy, Srabani Nanda and H M Jyothi qualified for the final round despite finishing fifth in the heat with a time of 44.41s. The Indian quartet qualified eighth and last.

Men’s triple jumper Arpinder qualified for the final round after finishing second in qualification Group A round with an effort of 16.51M which he achieved in his third and final effort. Arpinder finished fourth overall in the qualification round.

In men’s javeline throw also, two Indians — Ravinder Singh Khaira and Vipin Kasana qualified for the final round as the 11th and 12th overall.  Khaira finished sixth in qualification Group A with a best effort of 72.18M, while Kasana also finished sixth in qualification Group B with a best throw of 71.95M.

Results: Men: 10000M: Moses Kipsiro (Uganda) 27:56.11, 1; Josphat Bett (Kenya) 27:56.14, 2; Cameron Lewis (Canada) 27:56.23, 3; 3000M steeplechase: Jonathan Ndiku (Kenya) 8:10.44, 1; Jairus Birech (Kenya) 8:12.68, 2; Ezekiel Cheboi (Kenya) 8:19.73, 3; Pole vault: Steve Lewis (England) 5.55 metres, 1; Luke Cuttis (England) 5.55, 2; Shawnacy Barber (Canada) 5.45, 3; Women: 800M: Eunice Sum (Kenya) 2:00.31, 1; Lynsey Sharp (Scotland) 2:01.34, 2; Winnie Nanyando (Uganda) 2:01.38, 3; 100M hurdles: Sally Pearson (Australia) 12.67 seconds, 1; Tiffany Porter (England) 12.80, 2; Angela Whyte (Canada) 13.02, 3; High jump: Eleanor Patterson (Australia) 1.94 metres, 1; Isobel Pooley (England) 1.92, 2; Levern Spencer 1.92, 3..