Usain Bolt will be making his debut appearance at the Commonwealth Games in August after being selected to join the the Jamaican sprint team in the 4x100m relay.
Bolt’s involvement in the games was in serious doubt after he pulled out of meets on June 17 and July 5, saying he was not 100% fit after struggling with a foot injury. His last race was against a bus in Buenos Aires on December 14 but he has not competed against humans since Sept 6.
Despite his lack of fitness, Usain Bolt released a statement on his website expressing a wish to join in the games as part of a team, but did not want to take the place of any athlete in an individual event.
He said: “I am not ready to compete at the Jamaican Championships this weekend but I have informed the JAAA’s that I am available for selection for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and have submitted the relevant documentation.
“I do not wish to take the place of anyone who qualifies this weekend in an individual event but am available for relay duty if the selectors feel I can be an asset to the Jamaican team in Glasgow.
“I have received lots of requests, invitations and messages of support from my fans in Scotland who are looking forward to a great event.”
The news of his involvement will come as a boost to the Jamaican team after it was announced yesterday that Bolt’s training partner and sprint star, Yohan Blake, would not be competing in the games because it is not “in his best interests.”
Blake said: “The Commonwealth Games I found very intriguing. It’s a really good Games but we have come to a decision. It is in our best interests not to run there because the focus is really on something different.
“I’m not saying I wouldn’t run there, but the focus for me is to get back to the No1 spot in the world for the 100m and 200m and to get back to the level I was at, leading up the World Championships, the Olympics and the next World Championships as well.”
Chief executive of Glasgow 2014, David Grevemberg, said: “Usain Bolt is the fastest man on earth, a great global ambassador for sport and it’s thrilling news that his next focus is competing at the Commonwealth Games for Team Jamaica in three weeks’ time.
“Scotland has the biggest Hampden roar waiting for him and sports fans across the world will also relish the prospect of seeing him go for a first Commonwealth Gold in Glasgow.”