By Noel ‘Bravo’ Francis, Special to TrackAlerts.com
The women’s 4x200m event will be as unpredictable as the Caribbean weather. Based on the current top 200m sprinters in the world, Jamaica, U.S.A., Bahamas and Great Britain might have the strongest teams. However, in the final analysis, it will come down to how important the event is to some countries, which will determine how the top cash prize and medals are distributed.
Bahamas should field a competitive team as they have some good runners available such as Anthonique Strachan, Nivea Smith, Sheniqua Ferguson, Rashan Brown, Tayla Carter and Tynia Gaither. The loss of rising star Shaunae Miller at the last minute through injury would have severely hampered their medal hopes. I hope that the remaining squad members can draw inspiration from this setback and run their hearts out.
Jamaica will miss the services of double Olympic champion Veronica Campbell-Brown and the suspended Sherone Simpson. However, the squad of Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Samantha Henry-Robinson, Anneisha McLaughlin, Sheri-Ann Brooks and Simone Facey is very strong. At present, all the Jamaican squad members are running extremely well and the current Jamaican national record of 1:30.23 is likely to be lowered.
Team U.S.A., despite missing champion sprinters Allyson Felix and Carmelita Jeter, is still one of the favourites for this event. The squad of Bianca Knight, Kimberlyn Duncan, Tori Bowie, Paris Daniels, Tawanna Meadows and Shalonda Solomon should lock horns with Jamaica for the gold.
Some persons believe the Nigerian team could give the top nations a stern test. The squad includes the impressive Blessing Okagbare, Regina George, Gloria Asumnu and two young women with interesting names, Patience George and Endurance Abinuwa. It will be a blessing if Nigeria can display the level of patience required in this endurance event.
Great Britain has a young and exciting squad that should be in the mix all the way. Trinidad & Tobago led by the spirited Michelle-Lee Ahye will be coming like a ‘wrecking ball’ to the World Relays looking to create an upset. The quality and excitement of this event will have everyone on their feet. Who will deliver the knockout punch?