Jamaica Observer’s Paul A. Reid focuses on the Jamaican athletes that kicked off their participation in the 10th and final IAAF World Under-18 Championships today at the Kasarani Stadium in Nairobi, Kenya, saying that they “seek to bury an unforgettable performance in Cali, Colombia, two years ago when they landed just a single medal.” This year, they are aiming much higher, writes Reid:
Jamaica won just one gold two years ago in Cali, but will be aiming to match or better their medal haul of nine in Lillie, France in 2011 — four gold, one silver and four bronze. They mined eight in Donetsk, Ukrain, in 2013, when they topped the medal table with six golds and two bronze.
Despite the absence of seven countries — including the United States, Canada, Great Britain and Australia, and the ineligibility of Russia — 131 nations and the Athlete Refugees Team will battle over the next five days for supremacy at the youth level.
With five athletes who have leading times and performances in their respective disciplines, Jamaica is expected to challenge for at least a top-three finish, despite head coach Michael Carr asking for measured expectations before the team left the island last weekend.
Ten Jamaicans will be in action in seven events on the first day that will see three finals being scheduled, but will be eligible for only one — the men’s 100m where Tyreke Wilson, one of several world leaders is expected to open Jamaica’s medal quest.
Jamaicans will also be featured in the first round of the women’s 100m, where Kevona Davis is expected to win gold; women’s discus throw qualifying round; the first round of the 400m in both genders; the men’s 800m first round; and the qualifying round of the men’s triple jump. [. . .]