Questions on Bolt's form stay

Jamaica's Usain Bolt during a press conference on July 23, 2015.
Jamaica's Usain Bolt during a press conference on July 23, 2015.PHOTO: REUTERS

Jamaican returns to the track at the London Diamond League after treatment for injury

LONDON • After a six-week injury-enforced break, Usain Bolt returns to action in the 100 metres on the opening night of the London Diamond League meet today.

However, there are question marks over both his fitness and form, just four weeks out from the World Championships in Beijing.

The Jamaican will be hoping to find the Midas touch that took him to Olympic gold on the same east London track in 2012.

The 28-year-old last raced on June 13, when he struggled to get the better of his 19-year-old training partner, the Anguillan-born British recruit Zharnel Hughes, over 200m in the New York Diamond League meeting.

Bolt has since been treated for a pelvic problem by Hans-Wilhelm Muller-Wohlfahrt - the 72-year-old German sports doctor known as "Healing Hans" - and has resumed training under long-time coach Glen Mills.

THE LONDON FACTOR

London is a special place where I love to compete. I have great memories of competing in the Olympic Stadium in the summer of 2012.

USAIN BOLT, double Olympic sprint champion

With American Justin Gatlin a clear leader of the world rankings at both 100m (9.74 seconds) and 200m (19.57), Bolt desperately needs to rediscover a measure of the form that took him to his second set of three Olympic gold medals - 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay - three years ago.

He has run only one 100m race this year and stands joint-60th in the world rankings, courtesy of the modest 10.12sec that he clocked in winning a challenge event on a specially-constructed track at the Rio de Janeiro Jockey Club on April 19.

Bolt, the 100m and 200m world-record holder and reigning world champion, has been reported in the Jamaican press to have been "going well" at his European training base at Brunel University in west London. But he faces not one but two tests in his comeback, with heats on the schedule at the Olympic Stadium.

The 100m field includes his fellow Jamaicans, the 2013 World Championship bronze medallist Nesta Carter and Commonwealth champion Kemar Bailey-Cole.

Others in the running are veteran American Mike Rodgers, European 100m champion James Dasaolu of Britain and Frenchman Jimmy Vicaut. The latter equalled Francis Obikwelu's European 100m record of 9.86sec in Paris on July 4.

"London is a special place where I love to compete," said Bolt.

"I have great memories of competing in the Olympic Stadium in the summer of 2012."

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 24, 2015, with the headline 'Questions on Bolt's form stay'. Print Edition | Subscribe