SPORTS

Jackson Turns Up The Heat At JAAA National Championships

Jamaica’s reigning 200m world champion, 29-year-old Shericka Jackson, allays fear about her fitness by sprinting to a season’s best time of 10.84s to clinch victory in the women’s 100m final at the National Championships, on Friday.

“At some points during the season I lost a bit of hope because it took me so long to start, but I trusted the coach,” Jackson said after the win. “There were moments of frustration, but I am here, and I am excited.

“Honestly, there were a little bit of niggles [injuries] there and there, but it was nothing serious. [Before] opening my season, I had to catch up on some things, especially my body weight, I was over[weight] more than I was supposed to be and coach caught on to it a month before I opened my season. I know how to lose the weight and I was disciplined enough, and I am here and I am grateful.”

She further said, “Coach and I sat down, and we discussed what we wanted to do this year. Last year I ran a lot, and at the end of the season I was a lot more tired, especially after the World Championships. Coach sets the rules and I follow. He is a coach, and I am an athlete. Because he understands what he is doing, and I trust him and I am here today.”

Jackson’s training partner Tia Clayton finished second in 10.90, while Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who placed third in 10.94, is set to make her fifth Olympic Games appearance.

Jackson, the second-fastest woman in history in the 200m with a time of 21.41s, will be competing at her third Olympic Games.

She previously won gold as part of Jamaica’s 4x100m relay team at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics but has yet to claim an individual medal at the championships.

Expressing determination to end that drought this year, Jackson said that she trusts the guidance of Francis and is confident about her chances of standing atop the podium in Paris next month.

“I don’t have an [individual] Olympic gold medal, and that is something that I am definitely looking forward to this year,” Jackson said. “I am feeling good, because I just wanted to qualify and I did so, I am okay. It was a late start to the season, but nevertheless coach makes the rules and coach and I sat down and we had a long conversation about how we wanted to approach this season, and I think we did pretty good.

“I only ran one 100m this season and my 200 wasn’t the best. Like I said, it is a work in progress, and you just have to trust the process and I did, and I am here today.”

Readers Bureau, Contributor

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