Medal tally no cause for concern says Wilson

August 12, 2017
Usain Bolt
Ricardo Makyn/Multi Media Photo Editor Omar McLeod celebrates after winning the 110m hurdles in 13.04 at the IAAF World Championships at the London Stadium in London, England.
@Normal:Jamaica's World 110 metres hurdles champion, Omar McLeod, with his gold medal.<\n><\n>

LONDON, England:

Despite Jamaica's less than dominant showing so far at the 2017 IAAF World Championships in London, head coach Maurice Wilson believes there is no cause for concern and that the country's upcoming talent will transition smoothly.

Heading into today's penultimate day of action inside the London Stadium, the Jamaicans have three medals, a figure at this stage that does not match most pre-championships predictions.

The country has averaged 10.85 medals in the last seven major championships including the 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games as well as the 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2015 World Championships with the highest return being a 13 medal haul at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin with the 2012 Olympics and the 2015 World Championships bringing 12 medals each.

next crop

Wilson believes that with a number of the island's high-volume athletes either retiring, injured or missing from the championships, the transition of the next crop of track stars is where it needs to be to ensure continued success at this level.

"You know I am not into predicting medals," Wilson started. "But in my mind, I felt realistically, that we were safe for eight medals and if everything went our way we could get nine medals."

"We are at three now and I still think that we can get eight medals and if we were to get eight medals, I would be extremely happy because I would have taken everything into consideration," Wilson added before the Women's 100m hurdles semi-final, which saw all four Jamaicans - including defending champion Danielle Williams, failing to make it to the final.

"We need to understand that the transition of athletes will take about three to four years. I think we are already in that mode," said Wilson. "We got a couple of fourth places - most of these guys are youngster, it's their first time at this level plus we got several semi-finalists who showed a lot of grit and I think they have learnt from this experience. Once we organise ourselves and put the necessary systems in place, which I am quite sure that the JAAA would have started to think about, then we should be ok for 2020 (Tokyo Olympics)."

The coach also pointed out that Jamaica's sprint dominance over the years, have been led for the most part by the same athletes.

"Persons are complaining about the sprints but we have to remember that the persons who used to carry us in the sprints have been doing it for 8-10 years so most of these persons who are with us now are extremely inexperienced but I am of the view that we will be smiling again soon," Wilson sought to assure.

Omar McLeod's 110m hurdles win has secured Jamaica's lone gold to date with Usain Bolt and Ristananna Tracey winning bronze in the 100m and 400m hurdles respectively.

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