Two-time Olympic champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce says she could contest both the 100m and 200m at the World Championships
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce hasn’t ruled out defending both her 100m and 200m world titles next month in Beijing.
The two-time Olympic 100m gold medallist, who won her first Olympic title in Beijing’s Bird’s Nest stadium in 2008, had said that the 100m and 4x100m relay events were her focus for the IAAF World Championships which takes place from August 22-30. However, speaking ahead of the Stockholm Diamond League meeting, the 28-year-old explained that also contesting the 200m is “still possible”.
“I was down to do the 100 and relay, but the 200 is still possible,” the Jamaican sprint star said at a pre-event press conference on Wednesday.
“My coach (Steven Francis) did say earlier that I was not running the 200, but last week I was in practice and he said I should do a 100, a 200 and a 250.
“I said, ‘Why am I going all that way? I’m not running 200 at the World Champs?’ And he said, ‘Who says you’re not running?’ So I said, ‘You did!’ And he said, ‘I’ve changed my mind. I’m not sure.’
“The thing is, I’ve already earned a spot in the 200 as champion, so I wouldn’t be taking it away from anybody else.”
Fraser-Pryce ran a world-leading 100m time of 10.74 in Paris earlier this month, with the Diamond League meeting in Stockholm her first race since then.
“I didn’t come out of the blocks very well in Paris but my transition from 30 to 70 metres was the best part of my race,” she said.
“I’ve been training hard since and running some longer distances over 200m, which I don’t like.
“I’m looking forward to getting my racing started again tomorrow.”
Also speaking at the press conference in Stockholm was Orlando Ortega, who leads this year’s 110m hurdles rankings with his 12.94 from Paris.
The 24-year-old will not be among the athletes joining Fraser-Pryce in Beijing as he is currently transferring his allegiance from Cuba to Spain.
“I knew from the beginning it would be impossible to compete in Beijing,” he said. “But I know I can compete at the Rio 2016 Games and I am going to try for the World Indoors.
“For now, though, my world championship is the Diamond Race; that would be my gold medal for the year.”
Meanwhile, Reuters has reported that Olympic 200m champion Allyson Felix is set to run the 400m rather than the 200m in Beijing, the news agency stating that her coach Bob Kersee had told Reuters of the decision on Wednesday.