OLYMPICS:LEAD Dry day for the Caribbean as Walcott, Peters also miss out

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Jamaican Janieve Russell reacts after finishing fourth in the women’s 400m hurdles.

BROOKLYN, NY – There were no medals for the Caribbean on the sixth day of track and field competition at the Summer Olympic Games here Wednesday, and there was even more bad news as 2012 champion Keshorn Walcott and reigning World champion Anderson Peters, both crashed out in the qualifying round of the men’s javelin.

Trinidadian Walcott, who also won the bronze at the 2016 Games, measured 79.33 meters, and Grenada’s Peters, with 80.42, struggled in the windless Olympic stadium and finished 16th and 15th overall. 

Jamaican Janieve Russell produced the best Caribbean showing of the day, speeding to a 400 meters hurdles personal best of 53.08 seconds to finish fourth and narrowly miss out on a medal in a final that ended with the third world record in the Games in athletics. 

American Sydney McLaughlin overtook her compatriot Dalilah Muhammad at the last hurdles and eased away to win 51.46 seconds. 

Muhammad surpassed McLaughlin’s former mark of 51.90 with a personal best of her own, 51.58, while Holland’s Femke Bol logged a European record of 52.03 seconds for bronze.

Further disappointment in the men’s 200 meters final as Jamaican Rasheed Dwyer finished seventh in 20.21, and 2017 World bronze medallist Jereem Richards of Trinidad and Tobago ended eighth in 20.39, as Andre De Grasse of Canada captured gold in 19.62 seconds. 

Promising signs emerged in the semi-finals of the women’s 400 and the men’s 110-meter hurdles. 

There was the Caribbean one-two-three in the first 400 meters semi as Marileidy Paulino of the Dominican Republic (49.38), Jamaica’s Candice McLeod (49.51), and Cuban Roxana Gomez (49.71) all recorded lifetime marks. 

Defending champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo of the Bahamas took the second semi in 49.60 seconds. Stephenie McPherson of Jamaican then improved her best time ever to 49.34 seconds to win the semi-final three of American hero Allyson Felix.

Barbadian Sada Williams was third in the third semi-final, setting a national record of 50.11 seconds but missing out as a time qualifier for the final. 

In the 110 meters hurdles, Jamaicans Ronald Levy and Hansle Parchment were credited with the identical time of 13.23 seconds in separate semi-finals. 

Levy won the first semi, and Parchment, the 2012 Olympic bronze medallist, was second to World champion Grant Holloway of the United States, who won semi-final three in 13.13 seconds. 

Holloway missed the world record of 12.80 seconds by 0.01 seconds at the US Trials in June. 

On Thursday, Levy and Parchment will bid for medals in the hurdles final at 11:55 am (Wednesday, 10.55 pm Eastern Caribbean time). At the same time, World champion Steven Gardiner of the Bahamas, Kirani James of Grenada, and young Jamaican Christopher Taylor take on the world in the men’s 400m final at 9 pm (8 am Eastern Caribbean time).

James is the fastest qualifier after his quick semi-final run of 43.88 seconds. A win would make him the second athlete, after American superman Michael Johnson, win the event twice.

Also, on Thursday, Grenadian Lindon Victor will continue in the decathlon, where he currently lies ninth on 4293 points, with one of his strong events, the discus, still to come.

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