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Jamaican Medal Contenders Given Week to Prove Fitness

  • Reuters

FILE - Elaine Thompson of Jamaica celebrates her bronze medal finish in the women's 60 meters final during the IAAF World Indoor Athletics Championships in Portland, Oregon, March 19, 2016.

FILE - Elaine Thompson of Jamaica celebrates her bronze medal finish in the women's 60 meters final during the IAAF World Indoor Athletics Championships in Portland, Oregon, March 19, 2016.

Jamaican sprinter Elaine Thompson and 400 meter hurdler Janieve Russell have been given until Aug. 8 to prove their fitness for the Rio Olympics after getting medical exemptions from the national trials, team bosses said.

Thompson, 2015 world 200 meter silver medalist, withdrew from the Jamaican 200m final with a hamstring niggle, two days after clocking a world leading 10.70 seconds to win the 100 meters.

Commonwealth Games bronze medalist Russell set a season best of 53.96 seconds on June 2 in Rome, the current third fastest in the world. She did not compete in the trials.

Ludlow Watts, manager of Jamaica's 59 member track and field delegation, said they would be assessed at the team's pre-Olympic training base in Rio de Janeiro by the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association technical committee.

"These athletes have a deadline of Aug. 8 to prove fitness and that will be done with the medical team by the JAAA," Watts told the Jamaica Gleaner.
"They will determine whether the athletes are medically fit to compete and, in terms of preparation, if they are ready to compete in the races."

A third athlete with a medical exemption, Hansle Parchment, who won bronze in the 110 meters hurdles at London 2012 and clocked 13.53 seconds just over a week ago, will also need further tests.

"They have to show that they are injury-free or quite relieved of the injury they suffered," Watts said.

Six-time Olympic gold medalist Usain Bolt proved his fitness over 200 meters with a 19.89 second run at the Diamond League meeting in London on July 22.

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