UNFORGOTTEN CHAMPIONS

COVID-19 caused the rescheduling of Olympics 2020 but Athletics is essential. Sports Fans look forward to seeing Olympic caliber Athletes perform, especially those who compete in Track and Field events including the Marathon. Since there is a lot happening in the world from the Caribbean to South China Sea, this is an appropriate time to give a shout out to all Athletes expecting to perform in the make-up Tokyo 2020 Olympics. The event is scheduled for July 23 to August 8 2021 but still not a certainty.

There is hope all Athletes kept themselves mentally and physically fit. Athletes, who participated in the Diamond League, did well in preparing to be an Olympian. If your performance is not good enough, get busy and be psychologically prepared by January 2021. Consistent with expectations, let us look at the performance and potential of Athletes on the Jamaican Team. YOU ARE ALL UNFORGOTTEN CHAMPIONS. The Jamaican Team could win about nine medals. The following is my expectations of prominent Jamaican athletes, starting with the Females.

FEMALE: Natoya Goule, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Remona Burchell, Gayon Evans, Elaine Thompson, Stephanie-Ann McPherson, Aisha Praught – Leer, Jeanine Williams, Danielle Williams, Shanieka Ricketts, Kimberly Williams, Danniel Thomas-Dodd, Tiffany James, and Anastasia Leroy.

Congrats, to Elaine Thompson now married with new name Elaine Thompson Herah. Expectations are Elaine Thompson will be a contender in Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Her performance in Rio 2016 was exceptional. She is one of the few Female athletes who can run the 100M with regularity, in less than 11.00 seconds. She has also proven that she can run the 200M in less than 22.00 seconds. Expectations are she will perform well in Olympics 2020. Winning the Women’s 100M will require a time of less than 11.0 seconds, probably about 10.61.

Shelly Ann Fraser Pryce is doing very well. Twenty-Twenty (2020) was an excellent year for Shelly. Absent injuries she is the favorite to win the Women 100M. Shelly-Ann Fraser- Pryce continues to do well in Jamaican Female Track and Field. Her performances look Exceptional. She had a wonderful outing in Doha 2019 and continues to perform at a High Level.

Natoya Goule is a star. She will be a force to reckon with in Japan. She needs to exhibit more confidence at the start Line and wave with a little exuberance. Despite finishing sixth in Doha 2019, she continues to improve her performance in the 800 Meters. Goule will be ready to win the 800 Meters at Olympics 2020. It is refreshing to see an athlete step away and establish a new frontier. She is a Burning Spear.

Remona Burchell has potential that could surface in Olympics 2020. Base on her accolades competitive performance is expected. Her challenge is can she run faster than 11.03 seconds for the 100M. Her 200M performance of 23.92 is hopeful. One is in search of performances since 2018.

Gayon Evans has potential specifically in the 200M. Perhaps she should focus on that event. 23.18 seconds is a good time. If she can run faster than 23.0, she will be a contender. She appeared to be maintaining form in 2019.

Stephanie-Ann McPherson is still near the top of the 400M runners list. Olympics 2020 might be her final quest for Olympic stardom.  She appeared to be maintaining form in 2019 and will be a contender.

Aisha Praught-Leer should improve on her 2018 Commonwealth Games accomplishments. There are expectations of strong performances in all or whichever event she decides to run. She is also a Classic Nerd and Olympics 2020 could be her final quest for Olympic stardom. 

Jeanine Williams will be a force to reckon with in the 100M hurdles. She should focus on that event. The 100 meter will be a challenge. There is a possibility she might earn a spot on the 4×100 meter relay team. She is the epitome of a Student Athlete. Olympics 2020 might be her final quest for Olympic stardom.

Danielle Williams is also a force to reckon with in the 100M hurdles. She had great performances in the Diamond League in 2019 and an exceptional performance in Doha. Hang on to your Hats!!! Women’s 100M Hurdles will be hot, get your Tickets now, but brace yourself for a refund. Make-up Tokyo 2020 Olympics is not a certainty.

Shanieka Ricketts should do well in the Triple Jump. One expects improvement since the North American, Central American, Caribbean Championships, and Doha 2019. Olympics 2020 in 2021 might be her best year for Olympic stardom.

Kimberly Williams is an excellent Triple Jump athlete. However, the Olympics and World Championships have not seen her best performances. Perhaps, 2020 will be the year. The fans certainly hope she does.

Danniel Thomas-Dodd is ready to take her performance to another level. There is an expectation of improvement since 2018 Commonwealth Games. The competition will be fierce but she can win. Her performance in Doha 2019 is setting the stage. Her training technique and Public Relations presence is excellent.

Tiffany James appears to have some work to do base on recent competition. It will be interesting to see if she can handle performing as an individual in the 400M. Performance at the junior level is recognized but the Olympics stage is more challenging. Regardless she will be competitive.

Anastasia Leroy has exhibited solid performances and has additional potential. For Anastasia the time is now and a strong performance is expected. Despite finishing sixth in Doha 2019, there is still time to be ready for Olympics 2020.

The following is my expectations of prominent Jamaican Male athletes at Olympics 2020.

MALE: Yohan Blake, Everton Clarke, Omar McLeod, Javon Francis, Nathon Allen, Demish Gaye, Tajay Gayle, Ronald Levy, Clive Pullen, O’Dayne Richards, Fedrick Dacres, Traves Smikle, Andre Clarke, Jermaine Gayle, and Rusheen McDonald.

Yohan Blake did not have a good outing in the 2018 Commonwealth Games. His performance in Doha 2019 did not meet expectations. Olympics 2020 is definitely time for Yohan Blake to perform at his best in the 100M and 200M. The stage is set for Yohan to have solid performances. There is only so much continuous running in the legs of a Professional sprinter. At some point between Training and competing, the body gets tired even if the brain does not. Yohan Blake is approaching that point. He will participate in the 2020 Olympics and then retire. Suffice to say, no athlete is winning the Men’s 100M in Olympics 2020 unless he runs the distance in less than 10.0 seconds.

Omar McLeod continues to impress. His performances have created renewed interest in the 110M Hurdles. The 110M Hurdles is an event in which Jamaican Athletes should excel. Doha 2019 was a defeat but there is still time for Omar to bounce back. Until Omar is defeated at the Olympics, he owns that event. It is time to get ready for Olympics 2020. He has support in his consideration to compete in the 400M Hurdles.

Javon Francis appears to be staying in shape. Staying in shape will prevent a repeat of this kind of performance. Will 2020 be the year he talks to the man in the mirror? Will 2020 be the year he rebounds?

Everton Clarke with a Personal Best of 10.08 for the 100M and 20.45 for the 200M should see Olympics 2020 as a venue to achieve. He should make the Team. His Men’s 4 × 100 meters relay participation in the 2018 Commonwealth Games was strong. Olympics 2020 will make or break the career of many athletes. That is true for both Male and Female. Everton Clarke is one of those athletes. Apparently not selected for Doha 2019 but should make it to Olympics 2020.

Nathon Allen showed promise in 2017 but in 2018, he appeared to falter. Perhaps, there was something lacking in his training regiment. He should be able to resolve the matter and return rejuvenated.

Tajay Gayle looks exceptional at the Long Jump. Olympics 2020 is definitely the year for him to demonstrate his talent. He looked exceptional in Doha 2019.

Demish Gaye ran a respectable time of 44.55 for the 400M in World Championships 2017. He has some work to do but he is capable. The way forward is clear. If he can reduce his time to between 43.5 and 43.9 seconds, he will be in the discussion for a medal in Olympics 2020. That will change the narrative of the conspicuously absent Jamaicans in the 400M finals at the Olympics.

Ronald Levy is the Athlete with the best potential to challenge Omar McLeod. He has excellent technique and speed. He is at his prime for the 110M Hurdles. The 2020 Olympics, is definitely the year for him to demonstrate he is a superior athlete in that event.

Clive Pullen if still active should be competitive in the Triple Jump (Hop Skip and Jump).

O’Dayne Richards should be competitive in the shot put and discus throw. He should be able to give a good account of himself in both events. Along with Fedrick Dacres and Traves Smikle, the Men’s Field events squad should Medal at Olympics 2020. If Doha is an indication, Hardware is expected.

Andre Clarke if still active should be competitive in the 400M Hurdles. Regardless of any performances not seen, this event is up for grabs at Olympics 2020. Anyone from anywhere can win.

Jermaine Gayle still has time to come in from the cold. Excellent performance in the 400M event will require men who will consistently run between 43.01 and 44.5 and women who will consistently run between 48.0 and 49.4. This is a serious challenge. The 400M race is the most exhausting of the sprints.

Rusheen McDonald should be competitive in the 400M sprint. Regardless of any performances not seen in 2020, if he improves on his Personal Best of 43.93, he should make the Team.

HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL!!!

LFT

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