Sports / China

Su Bingtian runs 100m in 9.99 seconds

By Sun Xiaochen ( Updated: 2015-08-24 03:48

Su Bingtian runs 100m in 9.99 seconds

Jak Ali Harevy of Turkey, Usain Bolt of Jamaica, Su Bingtian and Andre de Grasse of Canada compete in the men's 100m semi-final run during the 15th IAAF World Championships at the National Stadium in Beijing, China August 23, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

Chinese sprinter Su Bingtian made history to become the first Asian athlete to appear in the men's 100m final at the World Athletics Championships.

With the crowd in the Bird's Nest hoping for a miracle on Sunday evening, Su delivered, enrapturing the home fans with a national record-tying result of 9.99 seconds, which secured him a finals berth as one of the eight fastest men in the world.

"Never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine to reach the final (of the World Championships). Now it's been realized. As a representative of all the Chinese athletes, I am just so proud to be able to stand on the finals track on home soil," an excited Su said in the mixed zone after the final.

Although finishing ninth overall in 10.06 seconds in the final, which was won by Jamaican star Usain Bolt in 9.79 seconds, Su's already cemented his status as a groundbreaker in the history of Asian athletics.

"I am very excited for him. To be able to come out and equal the national record once again, that shows consistency in his hard training,” Justin Gatlin, runner up in the final from the United States, who clocked 9.8 seconds, said of Su's performance.

"He's set an example for those (Chinese sprinters) to be able to take on the world … and be able hopefully to dominate and show pride for their country," the 2004 Athens 100m gold medalist added.

After training in Bradenton, Florida, in the beginning of the year, Su sprinted to a national record of 9.99 seconds to become the first Chinese to crack the 10-second barrier as he finished third at an IAAF Diamond League meet in Eugene, Oregon.

The sprinter's finals berth at the Beijing Worlds had raised public expectations of him becoming the next Liu Xiang for Chinese athletics.

Liu, 110m hurdles' gold medalist at the 2004 Athens Games, witnessed Su's semifinal and final performances as a guest TV commentator on Sunday.

"An Asian athlete appearing in the final of the men's 100m sprint at the World Championships; it's a great promotion for the sport in the whole world. His final qualification makes us believe that an Asian athlete can also run fast enough," Liu said.

Right after his 100m breakthrough, Su envisioned a more ambitious goal in the men's 4x100m relay on Aug 29.

"The relay will be a bigger challenge for us. But judging from the result we achieved last year, it's possible for us to make it into the top 5 (in the final). The relay race reflects the overall level of a country's strength in sprinting, and we've made big progress," said the 25-year-old.

Teamed with Zhang Peimeng, Xie Zhenye and Chen Shiwei, Su's team clocked in at 37.99 seconds to win the 4x100m gold medal at the 2014 Asian Games, breaking the previous Asian record held by Japan for seven years.

Xiong Xibei, a professor of athletic training at Beijing Sport University, said that Su has yet to realize his potential.

"If he could continue training under the most advanced guidance in the US consistently, and he's free from injury, I think his limit will be around 9.96 seconds,” Xiong said.

Most Popular
What's Hot