‘I wasn’t watching Sha’Carri’…’No comment’ - Jamaican sprint queens mum on disappointing Richardson performance

By Sports Desk August 21, 2021

Jamaica double Olympic champion, Elaine Thompson-Herah, had no comment regarding the pre-race comments of Sha’Carri Richardson after handing the American a crushing defeat at the Prefontaine Classic on Saturday.

Thompson-Herah clocked a new personal best of 10.54 in the women’s 100m, just outside of the longstanding world record set by Florence Griffith-Joyner in 1988.  Similar to the finish at the Olympics a few weeks ago, her compatriots Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (10.73) and Shericka Jackson (10.76) we second and third.

Heading into the race, however, the focus had been on the return to the sprints of American Sha’Carri Richardson.  Richardson had run 10.72 in April and won the US trials to set up the prospect of an intriguing match-up at the Olympics.  The 21-year-old was, however, suspended ahead of Tokyo after returning a positive test for marijuana.

Ahead of the Wanda Diamond League, many framed the race as an Olympic do-over for the American, who certainly headed into the event sky-high on confidence with plenty of pre-race chatter to boot.  It did not go to plan.  Richardson finished last in 11.14, and at the end of the race, the Olympic do-over had the same three medallists as the original.  On Richardson’s placing and pre-race chatter, the decorated sprint queens had no comment.

“I wasn’t watching Sha’Carri to be honest,” Fraser-Pryce, who went viral for a cheeky post-race smirk as she passed by the American being interviewed, said.

“No, you shouldn’t have,” Fraser-Pryce replied when anyone should have really been surprised by another Jamaican sweep.

Fraser-Pryce may well have a point, perhaps expecting Richardson, who is yet to win a major medal, to match up to the in-form Jamaican 100m medallist, who in total have 8 Olympic medals between them and three of the four fastest times in history, might have been a stretch.

“I didn’t hear much of that,” Thompson-Herah said when quizzed on the American's pre-race comments.

 “No comment on that,” the athlete added when asked for her assessment of Richardson’s performance.

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    Jamaica’s local-based players and United States-born goalkeeper Jayden Hibbert will have the opportunity to impress Head coach Heimir Hallgrimsson and possibly break into the final squad for the upcoming Concacaf Nations League (CNL) semi-final assignment against United States on March 21.

    This, as the 22 Jamaica Premier League (JPL) players and Hibbert, who was recently signed by Atlanta United 2, makes up Hallgrimsson’s 23-player squad down to contest a two-match friendly series against Caribbean neighbours Trinidad and Tobago on Friday and Sunday, in the twin island republic.

    The games which are scheduled to be played at the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium in Marabella, and the Larry Gomes Stadium in Arima, are both set to be contested at 3:00pm Jamaica time.

    Hibbert, 19, who was signed through the 2024 MLS NEXT Pro season, will become an Atlanta United First Team player effective next year, but until then, he will be hoping to secure a place in Hallgrimsson’s side for not only the CNL game, but also for the Copa America and World Cup qualifiers later this year.

    The number 19 overall pick in the 2024 MLS SuperDraft played two years at the University of Connecticut, where he started in all 14 games for the Huskies in 2023. The sophomore made 41 saves and picked up three clean sheets. He collected a season-high fives saves in three matches last season while earning Big East Goalkeeper of the Week honours twice. Prior to joining UConn, Hibbert won a state and national title at St. Benedict’s Prep.

    Meanwhile, along with assisting Hallgrimsson decide on which local-based players to include in the final Reggae Boyz squad for the CNL semi-final engagement, both games will also assist Angus Eve and his Soca Warriors in gauging their readiness for the upcoming Copa America qualifying encounter against Canada, scheduled for March 23.

    This two-match friendly series is basically a return leg of sorts following Trinidad and Tobago’s visit to Jamaica for two games last year. The Soca Warriors won the second friendly in Montego Bay 1-0, after the first match ended goalless.

    The two teams later met at the Concacaf Gold Cup in June where Jamaica came away comfortable 4-1 winners in the Gold Cup group stage meeting.

    Squad: Kemar Foster (Waterhouse FC), Shaquan Davis (Mount Pleasant Academy), Jayden Hibbert (Atlanta United), Kyle Ming (Cavalier FC), Richard King (Cavalier FC), Garth Stewart (Harbour View FC), Ricardo Thomas (Dunbeholden FC), Sue-Lae McCalla (Mount Pleasant Academy), Stephen Young (Portmore United), Joel Cunningham (Arnett Gardens FC), Emelio Rousseau (Portmore United), Alex Marshall (Portmore United), Shamour Smith (Montego Bay United), Jahshaun Anglin (Harbour View FC), Romeo Guthrie (Mount Pleasant Academy), Jamone Shepherd (Arnett Gardens FC), Kaheim Dixon (Arnett Gardens FC), Fabian Reid (Arnett Gardens FC), Shaniel Thomas (Cavalier FC), Jason Wright (Moylnes United), Justin Dunn (Tivoli Gardens FC), Andre Fletcher (Waterhouse FC), Devante Campbell (Mount Pleasant Academy)

  • T&T miss out after 0-3 loss to group winners Canada; Haiti also through with Jamaica to be confirmed T&T miss out after 0-3 loss to group winners Canada; Haiti also through with Jamaica to be confirmed

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    Myles Morgan (10th), Santiago Lopez (54th) and Kevaughn Tavernier (79th) got the goals for Canada, who secured the coveted top spot with nine points, as Trinidad and Tobago had to settle for second on six points. St Vincent and the Grenadines ended their campaign on a high with a dramatic 3-2 win over Dominica, to finish third in the group on six points.

    Frankroy Cain (10th), Kirtney Franklyn (44th) and Steven Pierre (90+2) found the back of the net for St Vincent and the Grenadines, while Dominica got goals from Ajani Richards (40th) and Keeyan Thomas (90+5).

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    After securing two wins early on, Haiti did just enough to secure the point needed for group honours in a 1-1 stalemate with Puerto Rico. That top-of-the-table clash in St Kitts and Nevis, saw Fabian Menendez (39th) putting Puerto Rico in front, before Joseph Belmar (71st) secured the precious equailiser for the French-speaking Caribbean nation.

    Group host Saint Kitts and Nevis gave locals something to celebrate as they topped Cayman Islands 3-0 in a game of academic interest.  De Quan Hamilton (16th, 45+1, 81st) got all three goals for the young Sugar Boyz.

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    British Virgin Islands topped Belize 4-3 in a seven-goal thriller at the Estadio Nacional in Managua, Nicaragua.

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  • Lamara Distin: Defying gravity, breaking records, and chasing Olympic glory Lamara Distin: Defying gravity, breaking records, and chasing Olympic glory

    In a moment that will resonate through the corridors of track and field history, Lamara Distin, the high-flying Jamaican representing Texas A&M, soared to unprecedented heights at the SEC Indoor Championships.

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    As she sets her sights on consistently clearing higher heights, Distin shared the key factors for sustained success. "Maintaining a positive mindset, consistency in practice, taking care of my overall well-being, and seeking support when needed" are the cornerstones of her approach.

    Grounded in her faith and armed with a renewed sense of self-belief, Distin is not merely defying gravity; she's rewriting the script of what's possible in high jumping and aiming for nothing less than Olympic glory.

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