A look at sprinting's pretenders to the throne
Dateline: Athens, Greece - 19th August 2004
Date: 08/25/2004 02:08 PM
Athens, Greece - 19th August 2004
00:00 - Sprinters walk out led by Shaun Crawford, Mark Lewis-francis,
00:14 - Close pan of (left to right) Justin Gatlin of USA, Asafa Powell of
Jamaica, Francis Obikwelu of Portugal, Mark Lewis-Francis of Britain, Shaun
Crawford of USA
v00:22 - pan from media to Athletes on stage
00:30 - Soundbite, Asafa Powell
00:47 - Soundbite, Justin Gatlin
00:59 - Soundbite, Shaun Crawford
01:10 - Various of Maurice Green running
01:21 - Wide pan of press conference
01:26 - Soundbite, Asafa Powell
01:51 - Pan of athletes on stage
File - Shot on 17th August, Source - SNTV
02:00 - Kostas Kenteris walks out of hospital to enter car
02:09 - Soundbite, Shaun Crawford
02:25 - Various of sprinters on the podium
Asafa Powell of Jamaica will lead a pack of newcomers as they get set to take
on the might of American sprinter Maurice Greene in Athens.
Upcoming American athletes Shaun Crawford and Justin Gatlin are the other
pretenders to the throne of the sprint king.
They are young and raring to go.
The honour to be crowned as the fastest man in the world is what motivates these sprinters.
Jamaican runner Asafa Powell is the new kid on the block, but having taken a few big strides in his
relatively short career, which only got underway in 2001.
Having beaten the world record holder Maruice Greene in two races this summer
in Europe, the 21-year old is clearly one of the favourite to win the sprint events.
Young American athletes Justin Gatlin and Shaun Crawford are also full of
confidence after clocking sub-10 second timings in the recently held US trials.
"Everyone has been saying that. I'm not going to object to that.
I don't mind going in as a favourite I just want to go and do my best and
see if I can I come out with a gold medal".
SUPER CAPTION - Asafa Powell, Jamaica
"Going out there, I don't think anybody is the favourite. Going
out there everybody has their bad races and everybody has their good races.
And the potential of all the athletes going on to that race they have done
incredible things, you know. you have Asafa you have Shaun.. this is, I think
the race is going to be unpredictable"
SUPER CAPTION - Justin Gatlin, USA
"I just feel I can't be beat. But it is up to me if I beat
myself that's how I'm going to lose. If I don't beat myself, they are not
going to beat me".
SUPER CAPTION: Shaun Crawford, USA
For all their brave words, American sprinter and current world record holder Maurice Greene is still
the man to beat in Athens.
Greene set his 9.79 world record time in 100 metres in Athens, back in 1999 - a feat which will not have been forgetten by his challengers.
However, Greene's biggest threat Asafa Powell has been in superb form in the summer. Powell clocked 9.91 seconds and 9.93 seconds in 100
metres races last month in London and Zurich respectively.
On both occasions, Powell beat Maurice Greene to win the races. The victories over one of world's
most experienced sprinter has given Powell huge confidence before the Athens
"That has built my confidence a lot. I beat him twice and that's
really good for me. For the runs, I have been training for the runs..so I
don't think that's a problem for me. I will try and take it easy for the
runs as easy as possible. But I think I will be alright for the finals.
SUPER CAPTION: Asafa Powell, Jamaica
The withdrawal of Greek sprinter Kostas Kederis, who won gold in 200 m in
Sydney, has put the debate on drugs back in focus in Athens.
Track and field has faced troubled times recently. American runner Tim Montgomery, who
failed to qualify for Athens Games, has been accused for using latest wonder
Crawford believes he is slightly disappointed that the field may not be
quite as strong as it might have been.
"I cant say I'm..I cant rejoice on his downfall. I can't say that
I'm happy that he is not competing. I want the field to be as competitive as
possible. That's how everybody you know, you put on a good race for the
people who come and watch you. Everybody wants fast times and everybody
wants and see a competitive race".
SUPER CAPTION: Shaun Crawford, USA
The opening action for Asafa Powell and company will come on Saturday morning, in the 100 metre heats. Maurice Greene is the defending champion
after winning gold in Sydney.
SHOTLIST: Athens, Greece - 19th August 2004