Execution was key to Kemba Nelson running a new lifetime best to qualify for her first ever World Championships at Jamaica’s National Senior Championships in Kingston on Friday night.

Nelson, a senior at the University of Oregon, ran a personal best of 10.88 to finish second to Shericka Jackson, who ran a season-best 10.77 to secure her first national 100m title. Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah was third in 10.89 while Briana Williams ran a new lifetime best of 10.94 for fourth.

The key, she said, was to execute her race plan. “Once I execute the time will come,” she said.

Nelson, who won the silver medal behind Julien Alfred at the NCAA Division I Championships in Oregon earlier this month, explained that the more than 25-minute delay at the start did affect her but she was able to regain her composure ahead of the eventual start and that also paid off for her. She credits the advice of Coach Robert Johnson at Oregon for helping in that regard.

“Coach Johnson has always said to be things don’t only affect me, it affects all seven other athletes. It’s just for me to regroup because it’s bad for everybody but don’t let bad stop me from what I came here to do.”

Naturally, Nelson was ecstatic afterwards, sharing hugs first with Jackson and then family and friends afterwards in celebration of the achievement of making her first World Championships team.

“It means a lot to me. Coach has always believed in me, knows that I could do it, a little girl from Mobay living her dream,” she said, indicating that her decision to leave the University of Technology and enrol at the University of Oregon has been a key factor in her development.

“One of the best decisions I ever made in my life,” she said.

 

 

 

While pleased with her three consecutive sub-11 times including a new personal best in the 100m at Jamaica’s National Senior Championships, Olympic gold medallist Briana Williams was ‘annoyed’ by a 25-minute delay at the start of the 100m final which she believed had an effect on her performance.

Williams ran a new lifetime best of 10.94 to finish fourth just missing out on individual representation at the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Oregon in mid-July. In the race where the start was delayed by more than five minutes because of technical challenges being experienced by the starters, Shericka Jackson won her first national 100m title clocking a fast 10.77 while Kemba Nelson finished second in a new lifetime best of 10.88.

Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah was third in 10.89, just ahead of the 20-year-old Williams.

“I had a new PB, I am grateful. I had a great start. My end was pretty bad but it was a great race nonetheless,” Williams said afterwards, indicating that the delay had a major impact.
“A lot, it was very irritating.”

She revealed that she is also thankful to be able to perform as well as she did, given some challenges that she has had to face so far this season.

“This year hasn’t been the best. Indoors went pretty well but I am still going on with my season,” she said as she looks forward to donning the gold, black and green in Oregon as a member of Jamaica’s relay squad next month.

Tokyo Olympics triple gold medalist Elaine Thompson-Herah said she momentarily considered walking away from the final of the 100m final at Jamaica’s national championships in Kingston on Friday night after technical glitches delayed the start for more than 25 minutes.

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