Carmelita Jeter of the United States and Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica lead the pack in the Women's 200m Semifinals on Day 11 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 7, 2012 (Getty Images) © Copyright
Preview London, UK

Day 6 Preview – London 2012

Will it be third time lucky for Allyson Felix? She missed out on the Olympic 200m gold medal by one place in both Beijing 2008 and Athens 2004, but tomorrow night (Wednesday 8 Aug) she will line up for the final of the half-lap sprint as she bids once more to win her first individual Olympic gold.

It will not be easy though, as she faces the woman who beat her in the past two Olympic 200m finals, Veronica Campbell-Brown, as well as the top two from the Olympic 100m final – Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Carmelita Jeter – and 400m champion Sanya Richards-Ross.

After an eventful first round, the semi-finals and final of the men's 110m Hurdles will take place. With Liu Xiang out of the running, the title looks as though it could be a battle between world leader Aries Merritt and World champion Jason Richardson.

But the danger could come from Russian record-holder Sergey Shubenkov, while defending champion Dayron Robles will not want to give up his title without a fight. First though, they will have to safely make it to the final – and the heats showed that anything can happen.

Several of the big favourites failed to make it through to the women's 400m Hurdles final, but the race still promises to be an exciting one. World champion LaShinda Demus looked to be rounding into form with a good run in the semi-finals, but 2010 European champion Natalya Antyukh posted a world-leading 53.33 in the semis to make her intentions known.

Britain will have hopes of winning their fourth athletics gold medal of the Games, after Shara Proctor led the Long Jump qualifying round with a leap of 6.83m – further than the gold medal-winning jump from last year's World Championships.

But equally impressive was Janay DeLoach, the American who finished one place ahead of Proctor at the World Indoors. In qualifying DeLoach jumped 6.81m into a stiff -1.8m/s headwind. Two-time World champion Brittney Reese only made it through to the final as ninth best overall, but she won't want to make the same mistakes in tomorrow’s final.

Bolt and Blake on track again

After this morning's 200m heats, Olympic 100m champion Usain Bolt and World 100m champion Yohan Blake will be contesting their fifth race of the Games so far as they line up for the 200m semi-finals.

Blake appears to have the tougher task in the first semi-final as he will be up against World bronze medallist Christophe Lemaitre, multiple World medallist Wallace Spearmon and sub-20 man Jaysuma Saidy Ndure – with only the first two to automatically qualify for the final.

Places in the final will also be up for grabs for the top performers in the women's 1500m semi-finals. Some of the medal favourites went out in the heats, and the same could happen again in this round. The first race sees Russian champion Yekaterina Kostetskaya take on US champion Morgan Uceny, 2009 World silver medallist Lisa Dobriskey, European champion Asli Cakir and 2011 World silver medallist Hannah England.

The second semi looks even tougher with the likes of Ethiopian record-holder Abeba Aregawi, World champion Jenny Simpson, World Indoor champion Hellen Obiri, two-time World champion Maryam Jamal, and 2004 Olympic silver medallist Tatyana Tomashova.

Eaton begins 10-event challenge

Tomorrow also sees the start of the Decathlon, the gruelling two-day event to test the top all-round athletes – the best of whom is USA's Ashton Eaton, who earlier this year broke the World record with 9039 points.

The gold medal, not another World record, will be Eaton's main goal in London as he looks to safely get through each event with as few mistakes as possible. But Heptathlon winner Jessica Ennis showed that conditions are good enough for record-breaking performances, so Eaton could well be on for something special.

Farah and Rupp return, Jelimo begins title defence

Gold and silver medallists from the 10,000m, Mo Farah and Galen Rupp will tomorrow take part in the heats of the 5000m as they look to add to their medal collection. Farah has hopes of winning double gold, going one better than his gold and silver from last year's World Championships.

But this event could be even more competitive than the 25 laps from three nights ago. World leader Dejen Gebremeskel leads a trio of talented Ethiopians, while Kenya will be keen to get on to the podium in this event, having missed out on doing so in both the men's 1500m and 10,000m.

Once the men's 5000m heats are done, the women will be out on track for the 800m heats, although the event will be missing one of the biggest medal hopes – Ethiopian record-holder Fantu Magiso; the only woman this summer to defeat Olympic champion Pamela Jelimo.

Nevertheless, tomorrow will be all about simply qualifying to the semi-finals for Jelimo, whose opposition in the following rounds will include World champion Mariya Savinova and 2009 World champion Caster Semenya.

Several other defending champions will be in action tomorrow in qualifying rounds of field events. Andreas Thorkildsen competes in the men's Javelin Throw, Steve Hooker goes in the Pole Vault and Oksana Menkova lines up for the women's Hammer Throw.

Jon Mulkeen for the IAAF