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Asafa Powell convinced he will run aganinst drug cheats

17 February 2008
www.news.com.au

The world's fastest man, Asafa Powell, is convinced he will race against drug cheats at the Beijing Olympics.

The Jamaican has refused to name those he suspects but is adamant anyone caught testing positive should be banned for life.

"I have a lot of suspicions but I keep them to myself," Powell said ahead of Thursday's grand prix series at Olympic Park.

"It's always going to be there, that dark cloud, because people are wondering who is really on drugs."

"It's a very unfair sport. I get my satisfaction from beating whoever I think is on it."

"They should be banned. They're doing something illegal and when you do something illegal you should be punished. So I would say yes, give them a life ban."

Powell has not competed since October but has been drug tested in December and January.

A cut knee suffered running up stairs at home prevented Powell racing in Sydney yesterday but he is confident he can bounce back.

"I'm used to running sub-10s . . . so if I can go below 10 for the first race that will be really good," said Powell, who holds the 100m world record of 9.74sec.

"It's the first race, so I don't really know what to expect. I've just got to go out and try my best."

Powell won the Commonwealth Games gold medal in 2006 but he has a point to prove after faltering at the World Championships in Osaka last year. He was the raging favourite but fell apart when challenged by American Tyson Gay and finished third.

"I need to stay focused and not repeat mistakes," Powell, 25, said.

"As soon as you make a mistake someone is there to come on to you."

"I can produce my fastest time. It's just for me to do the same thing that I do in other competitions in the major championships."

"This year I'm very strong. Running a lot faster than last year. I just want to go out there and put in the hard work and see where I'm at."

"Olympics is something that I really would love to win. I'm the fastest man in the world so people expect you to win those events."

"Once I keep running fast then no one else will beat me, because there's no one else running my times."

Joining Powell on Thursday are Olympic 400m champion Jeremy Wariner and local stars Craig Mottram and Steve Hooker, who will look to impress in the last meet before Olympic trials in Brisbane this month.



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