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  • Thathe Msimango

Adams dreams of medal at debut World Champs after scorching run in Paris

South African sprint sensation Luxolo Adams is confident that he's training is going well and he is peaking at just the right time in order to do well at next month's World Championships in the USA. Adams outclassed a quality field of athletes on his way to clocking a new 200m personal best of 19.82 in a Diamond League meeting in Paris, France on Saturday night. Amongst the athletes he defeated, were Canada's Andre De Grasse who is the reigning Olympic Champion over the distance. He became only the fifth South African to dip under 20 seconds over the distance and his time is the second-fastest behind Clarence Munyai's national record of 19.69.


Having arrived in the French capital with the season's best of just 20:28 and a career-best of 20.01 set in 2018, the man from Burgersdorp in the Eastern Cape produced the fourth fastest half-lap clocking of 2022 behind Americans Erriyon Knigngton ( 19.49), Noah (19.61), and Fred Kerley ( 19.80) to book his spot for next month's World Championship in Eugene, Oregon. Speaking to #TheTopRunner, Adams was excited to claim one of the biggest victories of his career so far.

Adams received rapturous applause from Parisians after defeating Andre de Grasse to win the 200m at the Paris Diamond League on Saturday night. He believes that his form is coming at exactly the right time ahead of the World Champs in July. Photo Credit: ASA Media.

"Thank you, I feel very happy and excited because not only did I win, but I also got my first sub 20," said an elated Adams. "But what makes me even more excited is the fact that it shows the peak is coming at exactly the right time, considering we are less than 4 weeks to the World Champs. The conditions we spot on for us sprinters because we love warmer weather so that might have played a huge role in my time." The 25-year-old will be buoyed by the performance after how his SA season started. After showing good form in the heats, he would have been disappointed to finish in a lowly fifth at the SA Senior Track and Field Championships in April in Cape Town in a of 21:14, failing to make a squad to the recently concluded Confederation of African Athletics( CAA) Championship. But he managed to recover from that setback through hard training. Now based in Gemona, Italy for his European season, he says this weekend's run didn't come as a surprise because he has been improving during training. " Look, I think any athlete goes to a race with an expectation of running a PB or whatever the case may be. We as runners are never satisfied with our performances so to say I didn't expect a quick time would not be truthful. Training has been going very well, like I said the peak is coming at the right time. I have been running good times in training and making sure that I give attention to the little things, it's the little things that matter at the end of the day," said the man who is coached by Gerrie Posthumus.

Adams posing for a photo with coach Gerrie Posthumus at their training base at the Nelson Mandela University in Gqeberha. Photo Credit: Nelson Mandela University.

After such a fast time, the obvious questions about breaking the national record have come up. But Adams has downplayed the talks of owning the national record saying his primary focus is to do well in his debut Championship which gets underway on July 15. "This is my first major championship and I need to gain experience, " said Adidas-sponsored athlete. "Right now what's in my mind is the World Championships, records may be broken but titles stay forever. I'm not too obsessed about running a specific time. I believe each and everything happens in its own time. It would be nice to own the record one day but it would be nicer if one day people remember me as a guy who won World Champs or places," he concluded.

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