Usain Bolt
Can Usain Bolt defend his 100m world championships crown at the Bird's Nest?Reuters

The 2015 IAFF World Championships is all set to kickstart from 22 August at the Bird's Nest in Beijing. A number of key events are scheduled to take place, including shot put, discus throw and many track events. For fans worldwide, the 100m men's sprint, which is scheduled to take place on 22 and 23 August, holds maximum curiosity.

Though the competition starts with heats, it will be followed by the semi-finals and the final race, which will witness only eight runners for the coveted gold medal. Hence, one can expect 100m sprinters from all around the world to give their best and bring glory to their respective nations.

However, the world will be watching three 100m sprinters – Usain Bolt, Justin Gatlin and Asafa Powell – closely.

Usain Bolt

Usain Bolt – the fastest man on the planet – may have been suffering from injuries in the recent past, but the Jamaican is one of the top contenders for the gold medal. Usian Bolt was in an impressive form in the last edition of the championship in Moscow, Russia, winning the gold medal with a timing of 9.77seconds. Bolt may not be able to replicate his stunning 2008 Beijing Olympic performance at the Bird's nest, but make no mistake, Bolt has it in him to defend the world championship title. 

Justin Gatlin

Justin Gatlin's career might have been overshadowed with off-field events as the athlete has been banned twice for doping, but his performance in the 100m sprint has been top notch. The American  won a gold medal in the 2004 Athens Olympics, bronze medal in the 2012 London Olympics and a a gold in the 2005 World Championships in Helsinki.

Despite the off-field issues, Gatlin is a huge threat to Bolt and to the rest of the sprinters in Beijing. Gatlin finished second in the 2013 world championships in Moscow, but will be eager to go one better this time.

The American has been mighty impressive in the run up to the 2015 championships in Beijing.

Of late, Gatlin has been running very fast as was witnessed in the Diamond League at Doha, Lausanne and Monaco, with a timing of 9.74, 9.75 and 9.78 seconds, respectively. Taking note of Bolt's gold medal timing in the last championship of 9.77, Gatlin should make Bolt sweat for the gold medal this time around.

Asafa Powell

Asafa Powell, co-captain of the Jamaican team in the 2015 World Championship, has been overshadowed by Bolt's performance a number of times, but he can change the trend by winning the 100m in Beijing. With Gatlin and Bolt as serious contenders, Powell is aware of the tough task ahead of him. 

Powell has looked good in the Diamond League as well with an impressive timing of 9.81 seconds to win the gold medal in the 100m sprint event in Paris.


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