• Diamond League

Bolt and Blake blaze to world-leading times

ESPN staff
September 16, 2011
Usain Bolt clocked 9.76 seconds in the 100 metres © Getty Images

Usain Bolt ran the fastest time in the world this year on his way to 100 metres victory in the final Diamond League meeting.

The Jamaican clocked 9.76 seconds in Brussels, 0.02 quicker than the previous best, which was set by his countryman Asafa Powell.

With 30 metres remaining Bolt, who made a sluggish start, was struggling to overhaul Nesta Carter in the lane adjacent, but peeled away from his rival in the final strides.

"There was never a doubt in my mind. I was running fast in the last couple of weeks," Bolt told the BBC. "Today I was really happy, I reacted good, overall I think it was a good race. False starts are never going to happen again, I'm a professional."

British duo Harry Aikines-Aryeetey and Mark Lewis-Francis completed in sixth and seventh respectively, with Lewis-Francis posting the best time of his season.

In the race immediately after Bolt, his training partner and world 100m champion Yohan Blake responded to the challenge, running the second-fastest 200m of all time, beating Walter Dix to the line with a time of 19.26. Blake's previous best this season was 20.33.

World champion Dai Greene finished second to Javier Coulson in the 400m hurdles, but the Brit still claimed top spot in the table. Greene was well placed heading into the final straight, then faded badly as Coulson peeled away for the triumph in 48.33.

"I've put the hard work in all year and this is my reward," Greene said. "I trained all year round for the Worlds, so once they were over I didn't want to be training, and my coach has been on holiday so I've just been by myself. I've felt a bit on holiday last two weeks, it's been hard to drag myself on track."

Hannah England, the world silver medallist, produced the second-fastest time of her career to place fifth in the 1500m, which was won by Morgan Uceny in 4:00.06. "That was fine," England said. "They went out really fast, a lot of girls died in the last lap. I went too hard, too early. But it's fun, I haven't had chance to run many races like this."

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