Rio farewell for Safa
RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil:
He'll go down in history as one of the fastest human beings, but Jamaican sprinter Asafa Powell will end his career without an individual Olympic medal.
Powell confirmed that the Rio 2016 Games will be his last, and with the 33-year-old failing to get on the podium in the 100 metres at his three previous appearances at the Olympic Games in Athens (2004), Beijing (2008) and London (2012), it will be the end of his Olympic chapter.
The sprinter will only compete in the 4x100m here in a rather anti-climax end for a man who twice broke the 100m world record and is widely regarded as one of the most naturally gifted sprinters of all time.
However, he made it clear that though his retirement is in sight, he is not quite ready to hang up his spikes just yet.
"Yes, it definitely is my last Olympics," Powell said. "I'm not going so far. I love the sport, but I definitely will be retiring soon. I don't know when yet, but I certainly won't be running until I'm 40. My legs can't hold up that long.
"I have been around for a very long time, and people always ask how I manage to stay in the mix for such a long time, but it's just the love. I love the sport and I try my best to continue competing at a high level and I love my country as well," added the two-time World Championships 100m bronze-medal winner.
His Olympics legacy is, however, more positive in the sprint relay, with him running anchor as Jamaica smashed the then 4x100m world record with a 37.10-second win in Beijing.
Powell believes the squad here, which also includes Usain Bolt, Yohan Blake, Nickel Ashmeade, Jevaughn Minzie and Kemar Bailey-Cole, is well positioned to do well, and he believes his compatriots will also sweep the 100m final.
"We have a great team here. Every time we go out on the track, we are capable of creating history. We are a team, the chemistry between the guys - the unity between us - I think that's what makes us so good," Powell said.
"We are here as a Jamaican team. We can't see anyone else but Jamaicans. We don't see anyone else. I see a Jamaican 1-2-3 (in the 100m)," Powell said.