Olympic champion and world record holder Usain Bolt cruised with ease into quarterfinal of men's 200m on Tuesday morning at the 12th world athletic championships in Berlin.
Bolt clocked a fastest time of 20.70 seconds in his heat group, far shy of his record of 19.30 a year ago in Beijing.
As a matter of fact, the men's 200m was dealt a blow before Tuesday morning's first round, as defending champion Tyson Gay announced Monday night that he will be skipping the half-lap sprint to focus on the relay instead.
It means that the final will now boil down to a race against Usain Bolt and the clock. And if recent performances are anything to go by, the clock has been taking a battering from Bolt, the world record holder over 100m and 200m.
But his first task - however minor it may seem - is to make it through to Wednesday's final.
Bolt made very easy work of this morning's first-round race in slightly cooler temperatures than previous days of this championships. He made a sluggish start, but quickly got into his running and found that a third-gear type pace was ample to get through, clocking 20.70, 0.04 ahead of Trinidad&Tobago's Rondell Sorrillo.
Olympic silver medallist Shawn Crawford recorded the fastest time Tuesday morning with 20.60 in the first heat and the U.S. champion looks every bit a potential medallist.
(Xinhua News Agency August 18, 2009)