Jamaican sprint power on show as Thompson completes double

Thu Aug 18, 2016 12:08am EDT
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By Mitch Phillips

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Elaine Thompson maintained Jamaica's incredible stranglehold on Olympic sprinting on Wednesday when she added the 200 meters gold to the 100m title she collected earlier at the Rio Games, while Usain Bolt remains on course for a track 'triple-triple'.

After winning nine of the 12 sprint events in 2008 and 2012 combined, Jamaica have now won the first three in Rio and, with Bolt impressively advancing to the 200m final and their relay teams oozing talent, they could take all six.

While the days of the United States dominating sprinting are long gone, they can at least take some consolation from their own special sweep on Wednesday.

Brianna Rollins, Nia Ali and Kristi Castlin completed an unprecedented 1-2-3 in the 100m hurdles - the first gold on the track at the Rio Games for the United States.

The United States also took gold and silver in a fantastic long jump final through Tianna Bartoletta and Brittney Reese.

While Bolt is now one step away from securing a third Olympic sprint double, he had to give top billing on Wednesday to compatriot Thompson, who delivered gold in the 200 despite nursing a tight hamstring.

Thompson faced stiff opposition, particularly in the shape of Dafne Schippers, but after running a terrific bend she maintained her form to hold off the Dutchwoman and crossed the line in a season-leading 21.78.

Thompson become the first woman to win both the 100 and 200 since American Florence Griffith Joyner in 1988.   Continued...

Aug 17, 2016; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Elaine Thompson (JAM) celebrates after winning a gold medal during the women's 200m final in the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games at Estadio Olimpico Joao Havelange. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports