- South Africa’s van Niekerk Cracks Michael Johnson’s 17-year world record
Duro Ikhazuagbe in Rio
Jamaican Usain Bolt became the first athlete to win three straight 100m gold medals at the Olympic Games as he stormed home in 9.81 seconds here in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Bolt, 29, beat America’s Justin Gatlin (9.89) to the precious medal to follow up his titles at Beijing 2008 and London 2012.
Gatlin got off from the block with a burst and it took Bolt until around 85m for the Jamaican to catch him and leave him training.
Bolt is now on course for the sprint ‘treble treble’ with the 200m and the 4x100m relay to come later.
Canada’s Andre De Grasse picked the bronze in 9.91.
Speaking after the race Bolt said his ambition of joining sports greats is about to manifest. “Somebody said I can become immortal. Two more medals to go and I can sign off. Immortal.”
He however admitted that he really could not go as fast as he would have expected. “It was brilliant. I didn’t go so fast but I’m so happy I won. I told you guys I was going to do it,” joked Bolt amid back slapping and hand pumping from his Jamaican brothers.
The night however did not go to the Jamaican legendary sprint king. South African Wayde van Niekerk broke a 17-year world record to win 400m gold in 43.03 seconds.
Van Niekerk’s 400m time was 0.15 seconds quicker than the previous world record set by Michael Johnson in Seville in 1999.
In tennis, Great Britain’s Wimbledon champion Andy Murray retained his Olympic title with an epic win over Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro in the men’s singles final.