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Blake marvels at his sprint double “miracle”

Yohan Blake confirmed his return to top form by completing the sprint double at the Jamaican Olympic Trials with a victory in the men’s 200 metres on Sunday.

Two days after he won the 100m, Blake delivered on his promise by holding off a strong field to capture the 200m at the National Stadium.

“I’ve been working miracles in my life. This is what miracles are all about,” Blake said.

World Championship silver medalist Elaine Thompson and 2013 world champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce were surprise withdrawals from the women’s 200m race, which was won by Simone Facey.

Facey came from behind to beat Veronica Campbell-Brown. No details were given about why Thompson and Fraser-Pryce pulled out.

Blake ran 20.29 seconds — the same time he ran 24 hours earlier in the semi-finals — to once again finish ahead of Nickel Ashmeade who was second and Julian Forte. They both finished in 20.45 seconds.

Blake said he has more work to do before the Rio Games.

“The plan is to go back in training. I need to focus on getting faster. I could have gone 19 (under 20 seconds) today. I just needed the win.”

Ask about the injury that kept Usain Bolt from racing in the 100 metre final in Kingston, Blake said doesn’t think it is serious enough to keep the Jamaican sprint hero out of Rio.

The biggest surprise of the day came in the women’s 100m hurdles finals, where world champion Danielle Williams hit a hurdle and crashed out of contention. Megan Simmonds, 21, who was in the lane next to her, held form and went on to win in a personal best 12.79 seconds.

Simmonds, who had promised much but had crashed out in the last two senior championships, qualified for her first major global championships. She said later, “The last two years made this possible. My trials, falling and getting back up, prepared me for today, so I am grateful for that journey as without that I would not be here today.”

Stephenie-Ann McPherson led home the four members of the world championship women’s 4x400m team as she won the 400m title in 50.04 seconds.

Christine Day, last year’s champion, was second in 50.29 seconds and pre-championships favourite Shericka Jackson third in 50.42 seconds with Novlene Williams-Mills fourth in 50.64 seconds.

Javon Francis won men’s 400m race, running 49.95 seconds to beat Fitzroy Dunkley (45.35).

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