CAPE TOWN – They have become good friends over the last few years, but Usain Bolt would’ve loved to have faced Wayde van Niekerk head-to-head on the track.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like it will ever happen. The Jamaican superstar insisted on Wednesday – ahead of Friday’s Monaco Diamond League meeting – that he will call it quits after the world championships in London next month, and that he will only compete in the 100m and 4x100m events.
That means there won’t be a showdown in the 200m with Van Niekerk, who has committed to running in the half-lap race in addition to the 400m, where he will defend the title he won in Beijing in 2015.
Bolt, though, does think that Van Niekerk is the man to take over his mantle as the face of athletics going forward.
Asked at a press conference in Monaco on Wednesday why he was retiring at the age of 30 instead of taking on new stars such as Van Niekerk and Canadian Andre de Grasse, Bolt said on the Diamond League website: “I’ve done everything that I possibly can in the sport. I’ve dominated over the years.