Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce has had a tough year. The two-time Olympic gold medallist has battled through a toe injury to be at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, doing battle for Jamaica and helping to lift the status of the island as the world’s sprint capital.
Her final act for this Olympic Games, was to help Jamaica win the silver medal on Friday night. Fraser-Pryce, anchored as Jamaica finished in 41.36 seconds in the race, which was won by the United States of America in 41.01 with Great Britain finishing third in 41.77.
According to her, however, while not specifying, there were a lot more things that happened to her and with the Games now over, she will use the opportunity to think. Her coach Stephen Francis confirmed she will be leaving the club after the Olympics
She said, “there are so many things that are going on right now emotionally. I have a couple days to just unwind mentally and to just bask in what has been happening. But it has been a blessed championship. I couldn’t ask for anything else. A couple months ago I didn’t think I would be here, but I am here. And tonight I get the opportunity to run with the ladies and we have a silver medal. We just have to give God thanks.
“It is a lot of things that have been happening. Mainly the toe has been a big, big part of it, because I don’t know how I was able to, but mentally I just knew I had to stand at the line. And once I stood at the line I knew I was going to compete. So for me, I just hope that when I get to unwind, things will become a little bit clearer,” she said.
Fraser-Pryce broke unto the scene in 2008 when she was the surprised winner of the 100 metres at the National championships, which, in the process, caused Veronica Campbell-Brown to be left off the 100 metres team to the Beijing Olympic Games.
This caused a furore on the island, as many opined that she should be left off the team for Campbell-Brown, an already decorated Olympian. She however, went to the Games and in a determined run, won the gold medal, to become the first Jamaican woman to do so.
She said, “I have had three fantastic Olympics. The first one I didn’t even know I was able to win an Olympic gold medal and I did. The second one was harder than the first one, because by that time I knew what I was capable of and coming in after a defeat in 2011 and another circumstance in 2010, mentally it was it was very hard for me, but you know I prevailed and this one was even more challenging.
“But you know my husband said to me earlier, maybe it is that for championships I am supposed to have it hard and it makes it even more rewarding when I come out and I get to be able to stand on the podium,” Fraser-Pryce said.
She was happy with the result of the team on Friday night. The team was made up of Christiana Williams, Elaine Thompson, Campbell-Brown and Fraser-Pryce.
Apart from the silver for the relays, Fraser-Pryce also won the bronze in the 100 metres. She said, “I think they are two fantastic medals to be honest. Tonight we wanted Elaine to get the third gold medal, but some things work according to God’s will and we have to give God thanks because we finished healthy and I think for us, it is an honour to come together as a team and to represent the country.
“At the end of the day, so many people train to come to the Olympics. Many. Many persons come to the heats and to the semifinals and they don’t even get to the final, but we made it to the final and we got on the podium.
“I know Jamaicans are spoilt right now, in the sense that they are used to so many medals, but this one I think is special, because everybody trains hard and we did our best tonight and I think a silver medal is good,” she said.
If Jamaica had won the race, Thompson would have won her third gold medal, after being victorious in both the 100 and 200 metres.