Athletics

Bolt predicts a winning time of about 9.80sec

Retiring star says he's confident and ready to go in his swansong event

As his long, illustrious career reaches its end, Usain Bolt is confident he will not be overwhelmed by emotions at the World Championships in London.

In a career spanning over 13 years, Bolt has amassed 11 world titles and eight Olympic gold medals along with the world records for the 100m and 200m.

On the eve of his final two races - the 100m and the 4x100m relay - the 30-year-old told Reuters TV that he would be as focused on the finish line as always.

"I can't approach it any different. It's just a championship, I have to come out here and look at it and deal with it like a championship so I'm just really focused, I've been training hard and I'm ready to go," said Bolt.

"For me, I'm always confident. I go there to win at all times. I'm always ready to go, I'm looking forward to the competition so, for me, that's it.

"I'm just going out there to win this Saturday."

For me, I’m always confident... I’m just going out there to win this Saturday. Retiring Jamaican sprint star Usain Bolt

Bolt is competing in his seventh and final World Championships, after clocking a season-best time of 9.95 seconds in a Diamond League meeting in Monaco last month.

He thinks that he will need to produce a time similar to the one that earned him gold at last year's Rio Olympics to win the 100m final tomorrow morning (Singapore time).

"I think it will have to be 9.80 low, perhaps the same time it took me to win at the (Rio) Olympics, I think it will take the same time to win here or close to that," said Bolt, who clocked 9.81sec to clinch gold in Rio.

"I'm feeling good, I'm feeling better after every race. Everything is going good."

One of Bolt's biggest rivals for gold in London was expected to be Andre de Grasse, but a hamstring tear in his final training session has ruled the Canadian out of the championships.

With de Grasse out, who can gatecrash Bolt's farewell party?

On the face of it, the onus is on American rising star Christian Coleman, and two old world title-winning foes, Justin Gatlin and Yohan Blake.

College student Coleman clocked the world's fastest time of 9.82sec this year but admitted spoiling Bolt's swansong event would be "crazy".

"To be one of the guys in contention to win and to upset Bolt, that would be crazy. If that happens, it would be great," said the 21-year-old.

"This is my first competition at international level and the goal is to go out with the win and that's everyone's goal.

"He's (Bolt) done some things that 20 years ago not many people thought could be done.

"He's got the 100 and 200m (world) records and he's the greatest of all time right now." - WIRE SERVICES

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