Jamaicans make athletics history in never-before-seen 100m feat

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Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (L) led a Jamaican clean sweep in the women's 100m sprint at the 2022 world athletics championships. Pic: Getty
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (L) led a Jamaican clean sweep in the women's 100m sprint at the 2022 world athletics championships. Pic: Getty

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce has avenged her defeat at the Tokyo Olympic Games by leading an unprecedented Jamaican clean sweep at the world athletics championships in Eugene, Oregon.

Fraser-Pryce sped her way back to the top of the sprint game by winning the women's 100 metres to claim her fifth world title in the event.

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The 35-year-old Fraser-Pryce relegated Olympic champion and compatriot Elaine Thompson-Herah to third place, with fellow Jamaican Shericka Jackson claiming the silver medal.

It was the first time in the history of the women's event that one country has completed a clean sweep of the medals, with America's men doing likewise in the 100m event one day earlier.

Fraser-Pryce, mother of four-year-old son, Zyon, led all the way and crossed the line in 10.67 seconds. She beat Jackson by 0.06 seconds while Thompson-Herah finished a surprising third in 10.81.

A night that started with thoughts that Thompson-Herah might knock off Florence Griffith-Joyner's 34-year-old world record of 10.49 closed instead with Fraser-Pryce setting a world championships record. Marion Jones set the old mark of 10.70 in 1999.

With her blonde and green-tinted hair waving in the breeze as she jogged through her victory lap, stopping to take pictures with fans that cheered her as loudly as anyone on Sunday, Fraser-Pryce was all smiles - a different reaction than last year in Tokyo, when she finished second by a sizeable 0.13.

The Jamaican trio posed triumphantly together for photos after the race, in scenes also wildly contrasting to last year's Olympics.

The same three women swept the medals at the Tokyo Games but on that occasion, Fraser-Pryce and Jackson didn't seem overly keen to celebrate with Thompson-Herah after her gold medal.

The pair stood away from Thompson-Herah as they awaited the final result to appear on the scoreboard, then offered a cold and quick pat on the back when it was confirmed.

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson stood away from Olympic gold medallist Elaine Thompson-Herah at the Tokyo Games. Pic: Getty
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson stood away from Olympic gold medallist Elaine Thompson-Herah at the Tokyo Games. Pic: Getty

Aussie Olympian Tamsyn Manou revealed at the time that tension existed between the sprinters because of Fraser-Pryce's decision to change coaching stables.

In Oregon for the world championships, that tension appeared to be a thing of the past as Fraser-Pryce revelled in her latest 100m title.

"I went back home and I worked and I worked and I came out here, and I had the success," a beaming Fraser-Pryce said in her on-track interview.

She'll add it to titles she won in 2009, 2013, 2015 and 2019. She also won the Olympics in 2008 and 2012.

A night after the US swept the podium in the men's 100, Fraser-Pryce and her Jamaican teammates showed there's still plenty of speed down on the island, with a performance that left fans in awe.

Jamaican sweep comes amid USA dominance

The Jamaican sweep offered a brief break from what's turning into quite an American show in the first worlds to be contested in the United States.

Minutes before the women's 100, Grant Holloway and Trey Cunningham finished one-two in the 110m hurdles.

The race might have been a sweep were it not for a false-start by Oregon receiver-hurdler Devon Allen, who came into the meet ranked second in the world.

The red card was met with lusty boos from the crowd and Allen took his time leaving the track, clearly not happy with the call after getting pinged for being 0.001 seconds too early off the blocks.

Devon Allen was disqualified after being detected jumping the blocks 0.001 seconds too early at the world athletics championships. Pic: BeIN Sports)
Devon Allen was disqualified after being detected jumping the blocks 0.001 seconds too early at the world athletics championships. Pic: BeIN Sports)

Around that time, Ryan Crouser was putting the final touches on America's trifecta in the shot put. It was Crouser's second straight world title to go with the win at last year's Olympics. His rival, Joe Kovacs, finished second and teammate Josh Awotunde was third.

"We're proud of it. We always say we're the best shot put country in the world, and today we proved it," Kovacs said.

Also wrapping up at that time was the one-two finish by American pole vaulters Katie Nageotte, who adds this to her title in Tokyo last year, and Sandi Morris, who now has three silver medals from worlds. Nina Kennedy won bronze for Australia's first medal of the 10-day event.

Earlier in the day, Americans Brooke Andersen and Janee' Kassanavoid won gold and bronze in the hammer throw. By the end of Day Three, the US had 14 medals - 11 more than the next-best countries; and six golds, which was triple the total for second-place Ethiopia.

with AAP

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