Usain Bolt finishes ahead of Jaysuma Saidy Ndure in the 200m at the 2011 Oslo Diamond League (© Hasse Sjogren)
Excitement will be at fever pitch in Oslo’s Bislett stadium on Thursday (13) when the world’s greatest athlete Usain Bolt is challenged by Norway’s Jaysuma Saidy Ndure in the 200m, providing the highlight of this year’s Exxon Mobil Bislett Games, the second European leg of the IAAF Diamond League.
Bolt has established himself as the finest ever athlete of any era with handfuls of gold medals and an exclusive domination of World records at 100m and 200m. He will be making his third consecutive visit to Oslo where he has delighted the athletics-mad crowd with his on-track performances and interaction with the fans.
After triumphing in his two previous races at the Bislett Games, Bolt will face a serious test in the form of Norwegian record-holder Ndure. The Oslo resident took 100m bronze at last year’s European Championships and locals hope he will be a serious contender at this year’s IAAF World Championships in Moscow in August.
Ndure, who in 2011 became the first European sprinter to break 10 seconds for 100m and 20 seconds for 200m, has always shown great talent but now under the tutelage of renowned coach Olav Magne Tveita, he seems to have found renewed focus, consistency and belief in his own ability. At the Rome Diamond League meeting on Thursday, Ndure set a season’s best in the 100m of 10.13, matching his fastest time from the whole 2012 season.
Also in the 200m field will be European 200m champion Churandy Martina and USA’s Curtis Mitchell, both sub-20 performers at their best.
Although Bolt was edged out in Rome’s Diamond League 100m, he is known for rebounding from his losses with emphatic victories. The 200m at Oslo is always a fitting climax to an exciting programme, and the prospect of the world’s greatest athlete being tested by a Norwegian will have the crowd in an electrifying mood.
Organisers for the IAAF
2013 IAAF Diamond League calendar
Doha, QAT – 10 May
Shanghai, CHN – 18 May
New York, USA – 25 May
Eugene, USA – 1 Jun
Rome, ITA – 6 Jun
Oslo, NOR – 13 Jun
Birmingham, GBR – 30 Jun
Lausanne, SUI – 4 Jul
Paris, FRA – 6 Jul
Monaco, MON – 19 Jul
London, GBR – 26-27 Jul
Stockholm, SWE – 22 Aug
Zürich, SUI – 29 Aug
Brussels, BEL – 6 Sep