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Olympics

Bolt edges closer to sprint history

LONDON: Usain Bolt moved to within one win of an unprecedented second successive Olympic sprint double here Wednesday as he won his 200m semi-final in impressive fashion.

The 25-year-old - who retained his 100 meters crown in on Sunday - would better American legend Carl Lewis's record of three golds and a silver in the 1984 and 1988 Games.

Bolt never had to move out of first gear in his semi-final winning easily in 20.18sec ahead of young South African Anaso Jobodwana.

"The aim was all about just getting through," said Bolt, who has said he will only be happy being called a legend if he wins the 200m title.

"I wanted to run the corner so I really pushed myself in the first 70 meters and then I tried to take it easier."

Bolt said that the final could well see his world record of 19.19sec tumble.

"It's a possibility, definitely. I can't say but the track is fast, it's going to be a good race.

"There are going to be a lot of great competitors so I'm looking forward to it."

His main danger will come from compatriot and training partner Yohan Blake, who took silver in the 100 meters, as the man nicknamed "the Beast" also won his semi-final with ease.

Blake eased up long before the line having done the hard work on the bend to time 20.01sec, the fastest time of the three semis.

The 22-year-old Jamaican insisted he could deny Bolt the title, the one the champion considers his favorite event, and that it may require a world record to do so.

"I think I gave away the 100 because I tied up a bit but I think in the 200m anything is possible," said the 22-year-old.

American veteran Wallace Spearmon, who was disqualified from bronze four years ago for treading in another lane, held off the charge of France's world bronze medalist Christophe Lemaitre to take the second automatic qualifying spot.

Lemaitre, European champion in the event in 2010, reached the final as one of the two fastest losers.

Lemaitre's successor as European champion, Churandy Martina of the Netherlands, won the third semi-final and could be a dark horse for a medal.

Like Spearmon, Martina will be looking for redemption as he was disqualified from second place in the Beijing final for a similar offence.

 

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