Powell wins 100m in meet record time

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{image-asafa powell_21022008.jpg www.oneindia.com}Melbourne, Feb 21: World record holder Asafa Powell defied a cut knee, storming to an ultra-impressive victory in the 100m in 10.04 seconds at the Melbourne Track Classic tonight.

Ever since arriving in Australia early last week with four stitches in a deep cut in his left knee, there had been grave doubt that he would have been able to run his first competitive race of 2008 at Olympic Park. But after undergoing a long warm-up session tonight, the 25-year-old declared himself fit and then went on to decimate a field including fellow Jamaican Michael Frater and former Australian record holder Matt Shirvington.

Powell had the race at his mercy within 20 metres and never let up, with Frater a distant second in 10.25 and Shirvington third in 10.35.
It was the perfect start to a season that Powell and the entire nation of Jamaica hopes will end in Olympic glory in Beijing.
Powell could hardly have been more impressive tonight, with his winning time only one-hundredth of a second slower than the 10.03 he ran to win the Commonwealth title two years ago in Melbourne.

He also broke the 10-year-old meet record of 10.06 set by former Olympic and world champion Maurice Greene of the United States.
In other early action tonight, Tasmanian Tristan Thomas won a thrilling men's 400m hurdles race, storming home over the top of Brendan Cole to win by one-hundredth of a second in 50.66.

New Zealander Monique Williams claimed the women's 200m title in 23.75 ahead of Jamaica's Melaine Walker (23.80) with Lauren Hewitt a disappointing fifth in 24.26.

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