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Backley: Get ready for the world record to be smashed

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Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake

At the end of the action at the Olympic Stadium on Wednesday, all the talk was already about how quickly Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake will run in the 200m final on Thursday, and I think the world record is going to go.

The general assumption is that Bolt is going to run away from Blake, but the 22-year-old has pulled up in the last 20 metres and still managed to run 20 seconds flat.

The way I saw his semi-final, Blake could have comfortably run 19.5 and he was not even looking to run at full pelt at any stage of the race.

Bolt looked slightly better, perhaps, but the two Jamaican superstars will be there at the line together for sure when it comes to the final on Thursday.

The people who say that Bolt is not 100 per cent fit are sadly misguided: there is no way that he would be able to run 9.63 in 16 degrees if he was not fully fit, and he will prove that again in the 200m.

For Bolt to run at that pace and to win the 100m final so comfortably on a cold evening suggests that he and Blake will break the 200m world record on Thursday evening.

I do not think it is at all out of the question that he will run a world record in the 200m, and he will break his own mark with Blake in a close second.

I am predicting that it will be a quick, quick, quick race with Bolt just pipping Blake and setting a new mark for the 200m — which is, as we all know, his favourite event.

As for Kenya's David Rudisha, I cannot see him breaking the 800m world record because there is no one around who can push him to that mark, and he is not going to want to go for it on his own.

There is no doubt that Rudisha will win very comfortably in tomorrow's final, because no one can stay with him — he will be running at an entirely different level to every other athlete in that race.

Given a pace maker and no pressure of a gold medal being at stake, Rudisha will surely break his own world record again at some point, but he has already said that he is running for the victory and not the time.

Britain's Lawrence Clarke was hugely impressive in the final of the men's 110m hurdles, and there is no doubt that he has a very bright future ahead of him.

At just 22-years-old, the Londoner showed real maturity and confidence to pull out a PB of 13.39 on the biggest stage of all without any real sign of nerves.

There are different types of fourth places: Dai Greene was gutted with his, but for Clarke this was a tremendous and unexpected result at this stage of his career.

Coached by Malcolm Arnold, Clarke has the right support and environment for his development, and he proved tonight that he can perform under real pressure.

As an athlete, it is very important and telling to find out how you cope when it really matters, and he has proved to himself that he can deliver in very big races.

The USA had a quite brilliant evening, and the one-two in the 110m hurdles was an exceptional, if expected, result.

Aries Merritt won with a PB of 12.92, and he was hugely impressive in taking gold ahead of compatriot Jason Richardson.

With Allyson Felix also winning gold in the women's 200m, it was a big statement from the USA with Jamaica having stolen the limelight prior to this evening.

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