Usain Bolt 100m heats Rio Olympics
Usain Bolt crosses the finish line in first in the 100m heats of the Rio OlympicsReuters

It was all a bit blah, there was a bit of decent cheering after each of the first six heats of the 100m, but for the most part the atmosphere was just warming up, waiting to watch the man everyone had come to see.

The moment that man Usain Bolt walked out to take part in his race at the Olympic Stadium, the volume levels rose, and then it went higher when Bolt took a bit of a practice start, and then a bit higher as the announcer called his name out, and then it reached a crescendo as the double Olympic champion ran home in first place, like everyone knew he would, while barely breaking a sweat.

Justin Gatlin, Bolt's biggest rival for the gold medal in these Rio 2016 Games, ran the fastest time in the heats at 10.01, while Bolt finished his sprint at 10.07 with Yohan Blake (10.11) and Ben Youssef Meite (10.03), the other two major contenders for a medal, also finishing first in their respective heats. Canadian Andre De Grasse is also another to watch, after coming through in 10.04.

Bolt had to wait for six races to be complete, before completing in his Heat 7, but when he did come out, he made his race look easy, barely getting out of second gear to finish comfortably ahead of Andrew Fisher, who also qualified for the semifinals with 10.12.

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There was not much of a wait for Gatlin, who ran in Heat 2, and the American, the antagonist to Bolt's fairytale dreams, laid down the marker, by winning his heat in the best overall time of all the eight heats.

All the big boys will definitely dip under 10s as the semifinals and the final come to the fore on Sunday, but these heats were a good pointer towards what to expect in the finale.

For the semifinal list click HERE

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