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Merritt, Taylor ready to make a name against Wariner

29 August 2007

By Gary Smith

World and Olympic champion Jeremy Wariner will have his hands full when he lines up to defend his 400m title in Osaka.

His main challengers, Angelo Taylor and LaShawn Merritt, the other Americans in final wants to make their mark in the event and come finals day the duo who joined Wariner as semi-finals heat winner on Wednesday, vowed to make their fellow American team-mate work hard to regain his crown.

“He’s great,” Merritt said. “But everybody’s hungry and everybody’s trying to eat. We all think we can win.

“All three Americans are coming in confident and fit. We’ve got a great chance to go 1-2-3,” Merritt said.

Taylor, who has had trouble with law in past also believes the race will be an interesting one.

“We’re deep,” Taylor said. “Everybody’s running fast.”

Wariner may be the strong favourite, but like Merritt, Taylor is confident in an all-out affair

“This is going to be a fight,” Taylor confidently said. “It’s not going to be an easy win for him (Wariner).

“We’ve got to beat him,” Taylor said. “He’s the champion right now. He has to be beaten.”

In the meantime, Wariner, who recently blasted his way a superb 43.50 at a meet in Sweden, is also looking forward to defending his title.

“With the way I just felt, the finals are going to be fun,” Wariner said.

He is the third-fastest 400-meter runner in history, with only the great Michael Johnson and Harry Reynolds going run faster.

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