More Sites
Search
Pearson fastest in 100m hurdles heats
By John Salvado
20:37 AEST Mon Aug 6 2012

Sally Pearson channelled a welcome bout of nerves into the fastest-ever Olympic 100m hurdles first-round time on Monday, leaving her rivals in no doubt about the size of the challenge confronting them at the London Games.

Pearson, 25, demolished her opponents in heat five, clocking 12.57 seconds, almost half a second quicker than anyone else in the race.

The Queenslander looked more focused than ever before the race, barely acknowledging the rapturous reception she received from a capacity crowd of 80,000.

And she was all business once the gun went off, forging further ahead as the race wore on.

"The nerves were because it's the Olympic Games, nerves because it is the first round of my event," she said after advancing to Tuesday's semi-finals.

"If I'm not nervous I'm not ready, so I'm glad I was nervous.

"I run against these girls every single time through the Diamond League so it is nothing new to me. It is just a matter of taking the Olympics out of it and making it just one race.

"I was really quite nervous about that race.

"I am glad it is out of the way. Now I can go and move on."

Americans Kellie Wells and Lolo Jones looked the best of the chasing pack, winning their heats in 12.69 and 12.68 respectively.

Wells is the only woman to have beaten Pearson in 2012, with that victory coming in atrocious conditions at the London Diamond League meet last month.

Jones was the red-hot favourite to win this event in Beijing four years ago, only to crash into the second-last hurdle.

Defending Olympic champion Dawn Harper (12.75) also advanced with a minimum of fuss on Monday, as did two-time European champion Nevin Yanit from Turkey (12.70).

The big victim in the opening round was 2009 world champion Brigitte Foster-Hylton from Jamaica, who smashed into the fifth barrier before limping over the line in 13.98.

Pearson is a short-priced favourite to become Australia's first female track and field Olympic champion since Cathy Freeman in the 400m 12 years ago in Sydney.

Her time of 12.28 in last year's world championships final in Daegu was the fastest in almost two decades and moved her to fourth spot on the alltime list.

Heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis from Britain decided not to contest the individual 100m hurdles event, despite clocking a stunning time of 12.54 in the opening event of the heptathlon.

Did you like this article? Share your thoughts
SCHEDULEDAY0
27Jul
DAY1
28Jul
DAY2
29Jul
DAY3
30Jul
DAY4
31Jul
DAY5
1Aug
DAY6
2Aug
DAY7
3Aug
DAY8
4Aug
DAY9
5Aug
DAY10
6Aug
DAY11
7Aug
DAY12
8Aug
DAY13
9Aug
DAY14
10Aug
DAY15
11Aug
DAY16
12Aug
Opening Ceremony
Archery
Athletics
Badminton
Basketball
Beach Volleyball
Boxing
BMX
Cycling
Diving
Equestrian
Fencing
Football
Gymnastics
Handball
Hockey
Judo
Modern Pentathlon
Rowing/Canoe/Kayak
Sailing
Shooting
Swimming
Synchro
Table Tennis
Taekwondo
Tennis
Triathlon
Volleyball
Water Polo
Weightlifting
Wrestling
Closing ceremony
DAY0
27Jul
DAY1
28Jul
DAY2
29Jul
DAY3
30Jul
DAY4
31Jul
DAY5
1Aug
DAY6
2Aug
DAY7
3Aug
DAY8
4Aug
DAY9
5Aug
DAY10
6Aug
DAY11
7Aug
DAY12
8Aug
DAY13
9Aug
DAY14
10Aug
DAY15
11Aug
DAY16
12Aug
You need the latest version of Flash Player.
Enjoy the most vivid content on the web
Watch video without extra features
Interact with applications on your favourite sites
Upgrade now

You need the latest version of Flash Player.
Enjoy the most vivid content on the web
Watch video without extra features
Interact with applications on your favourite sites
Upgrade now