Commonwealth gamesSaturday, August 2, 2014
Usain Bolt makes track debut
Teen weightlifter stripped of gold after failing doping test
Usain Bolt made his debut in the Commonwealth Games yesterday helping Jamaica’s 4x100-metre team to win its heat and advance to today’s final.
GLASGOW, Scotland — If Scots were offended by Usain Bolt they didn’t show it yesterday as the Jamaican sprint star made his track debut at the Commonwealth Games.
Despite media reports that he was disparaging about Glasgow, Bolt’s introduction to a 40,000-plus crowd at Hampden Park was greeted with a roar of cheers.
And Bolt gave them what they wanted to see, anchoring Jamaica’s 4x100-metre team to a comfortable win in its heat as the favourite advanced to today’s final in 38.99 seconds.
“It was wonderful, it’s just like the London Olympics — the crowd was great,” the six-time Olympic champion said. “It’s just been wonderful.”
Chika Amalaha, a 16-year-old weightlifter was stripped of her gold medal after a doping hearing. The Nigerian tested positive for diuretics and masking agents after winning the 53-kilogram division last Friday in becoming the youngest female to win a weightlifting title at a Commonwealth Games. Amalaha’s gold medal, which now goes to Dika Toua of Papua New Guinea.
“Being a junior obviously there must be some culpability from those that are looking after her, whether it is coaches or managers or doctors,” Games President Prince Imran Tunku of Malaysia, who chaired the hearing, told The Associated Press.
With the deadly Ebola outbreak in West Africa spreading, fears have reached the games. Two Sierra Leone athletes — cyclist Moses Sesay and table tennis player Samuel Morris — underwent tests for the virus in Glasgow but were cleared to compete. With visas valid until September, team members are hoping to stay in Scotland in a bid to avoid Ebola.
Perhaps the greatest achievement on the track yesterday came from Lynsey Sharp in winning silver in the 800 final despite a bout of sickness. Eunice Jepkoech Sum of Kenya won in two minutes, 0.37 seconds.
After winning pole vault bronze in 2006 and silver in 2010, Steven Lewis completed the set by winning the gold after clearing 5.55 metres. It was England’s first title in the event since the 1986 Edinburgh Games. Compatriot Luke Cutts claimed silver as England strengthened its lead over Australia at the top of the medals’ standings.
England’s footballers are renowned for their penalty struggles. The country’s female field hockey players showed them how to do it, beating New Zealand 3-1 in a shootout after a 1-1 draw in regulation time. In the gold medal match today, England will play defending champion Australia, which beat South Africa 7-1.
Herald staff with agencies