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Athletics: Asher-Smith aiming for sprint double in Doha

PUBLISHED: 07:30 09 September 2019 | UPDATED: 07:30 09 September 2019

Dina Asher-Smith celebrates (pic Simon Cooper/PA)

Dina Asher-Smith celebrates (pic Simon Cooper/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Blackheath & Bromley Harriers’ Dina Asher-Smith Dina Asher-Smith will focus on a 100m and 200m sprint double title at the World Championships later this month, writes Ziad Chaudry.

In her final race before heading off to Doha, the 23-year-old 'Orpington Express' finally got one over Jamaica's Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce in the women's 100m to register a season's best 10.88secs at the AG Memorial Van Damme IAAF Diamond League Final in Brussels, Belgium.

Former Olympic and world champion Fraser-Pryce posted 10.95 while Ivory Coast's Marie-Josee Ta Lou was third in 11.09 and Dutchwoman Dafne Schippers fourth in 11.22.

"I didn't have a time in my mind simply because in these kind of races you never know what's going to happen," said Asher-Smith who also claimed the lucrative IAAF Diamond League title after finishing top of the women's 100m standings.

"I just wanted to go out there and put together a great race. My coach (John Blackie) said 'you can do it if you just do X, Y, and Z - it's going to be very interesting' and my coach is the king of the understatements, so interestingly it was good."

Friday's victory in a high quality field was a huge confidence booster for Asher-Smith but she believes all the top contenders will be gunning for one another come the World Championships.

"You've got so many fantastically talented and experienced women so it's great, but Diamond League is a one-off race," she added.

"When the championships comes and you've got rounds and a different climate then I'm sure everybody will bring their absolute A game.

"I just want to get to the championships being fit and in decent shape because as I've seen in the past and this will be my fourth world championships, just get there fit and anything will happen. That's why we love athletics because it's so unpredictable, particularly in the major championships."

Asher-Smith will go into the Qatar capital as the current world number one women's 100m sprinter but that status is irrelevant to herself as she will be attempting to win Britain's second women's sprint medal at a major world championships.

You have to go back 36 years to the very first edition in Helsinki, Finland when Kathy Smallwood-Cook won bronze in 200m.

"It's nice going in there with some nice performances but ultimately it what's happens in the final that counts and you actually have to get there," she added.

"Also world ranking systems is kind of new and I think they're still ironing it out."


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