Shine like a diamond! Powell wins 2016 Diamond Trophy
United States $40,000 a shiny new 100 metres Diamond League trophy and his 97th sub-10 seconds time in his career. Things couldn't have gone better for Jamaican sprinter Asafa Powell, who despite enduring what he would consider a disappointing season by his standards, left the Letzigrund Stadium with one of the broadest smiles after a successful Weltklasse 2016 Zurich Diamond League outing.
He wasn't the only one smiling.
Double Olympic sprint champion Elaine Thompson was the happier of the two after herself and Dutch rival Dafne Schippers rolled to the finish line in an epic 200m battle in the latest episode of a clash that looks set to excite track and field fans for years to come.
Thompson had yet more reason to celebrate yesterday, after scorching the track on her second leg to help the Jamaican team, which was completed by Christania Williams, Simone Facey and Veronica Campbell-Brown to a commanding win in the women's 4x100m in a time of 41.65 - a time that bettered Great Britain's bronze medal winning mark from the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
Powell, who stopped the clock at 9.94 seconds told STAR Sports after his race that he was thrilled with the win and everything that came with it, noting that he was always confident that he would walk away with the bounty.
"I'm really happy for this win, the race wasn't perfect because I had a slip in the blocks but I was always confident that I would win here and I am really pleased to win my third Diamond League title," Powell said.
Second place went to South African Akani Simbine, who continued his impressive season with a 9.99 seconds finish ahead of the Ivory Coast's Ben Youssef Meite, who clocked the same time. Meite, who came into the meet as the leader in the Diamond Race for the 100m, ended with 24 points - two less than the Jamaican, who started the day in third position.
110m hurdles Olympic gold medal winner Omar McLeod, found things a little rougher in the flat sprint, clocking 10.12 for sixth place - not close to his 9.99 personal best in the event, but right around his target for yesterday.
"This was what me and my coach was looking for," McLeod said. "Man it was tough out there, but it was also fun and I will definitely be doing more 100m races and looking to learn the event and improve."
Thompson got the win and perhaps threw another psychological dart in Schippers' direction with her 21.85 seconds win in the.
"Honestly I didn't even know I was going that fast," said Thompson. "I wanted to be as smooth as possible coming off the curve and I just gave it my all going to the line."
Megan Simmonds was sixth in 12.90 seconds in the 100m hurdles event which was won by world record holder Kendra Harrison in 12.63 as she underscored her dominance with a Diamond Trophy win. Cindy Ofili was second in 12.70 with Dawn Harper-Nelson taking third in 12.73.
The first Jamaican on the track was Christania Williams, who clocked the fastest time in the two pre-international programme women's 100m event, winning her section in 11.04 seconds with American Barbara Pierre, 11.20, and Ukraine's Natalia Pohrebniak, 11.23 finishing second and third respectively.