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Greene says Bolt has surpassed rivals this season

9 August 2008

Maurice Greene and Usain Bolt Maurice Greene and Usain Bolt
By Gary Smith

Former Olympic champion and world record holder Maurice Greene believes Jamaican champion Usain Bolt is a cut above his rivals in the men's 100 metres this season.

Bolt has dominated the sprints this season, winning nine of his ten races while in the process running a world record of 9.72 seconds in the 100m in New York on May 31.

He has been tipped by many to win the dashes at the Beijing Games and Greene believes the Jamaican has certainly established him.

What Usain Bolt did earlier this year to run a (world record) 9.72 put himself on a totally different level to anyone else in the 100 metres," Greene was quoted as saying.

Earlier last month Greene, a retired sprinter, said with Tyson Gay, the world sprint double champion, suffering a hamstring injury set back at the U.S. trials, Bolt is without doubt the man to beat.

"Usain Bolt has set himself apart from the group. He is the man to beat right now and it's going to be tough to beat him," he said during the World Junior Championships in Poland last month.

"This man just came out. No one expected him to do any of this stuff and to run 9.76 and then he comes back and runs 9.72. That is impressive to me," Greene said.

A week ago, Bolt, 21, was given the go ahead by his coach Glen Mills to chase the sprint double at athletics' biggest festival.

He is expected to have a fracas with fellow Jamaican former record holder Asafa Powell and Gay for the 100m title, while Americans Walter Dix and Shawn Crawford are expected to be his strongest challengers in the 200m.

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