I'm running the 100? If you say so says Bolt

BEIJING Tue Aug 5, 2008 6:55am EDT

Current world record holder in the 100m sprint, Jamaica's Usain Bolt, poses for a picture in front of the National Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, ahead of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games August 5, 2008. REUTERS/Hans Deryk

Current world record holder in the 100m sprint, Jamaica's Usain Bolt, poses for a picture in front of the National Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, ahead of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games August 5, 2008.

Credit: Reuters/Hans Deryk

BEIJING (Reuters) - Everybody knows that Usain Bolt is going to run in the 100 meters at the Olympics - except the world record holder himself.

Bolt's coach Glen Mills told Reuters on Sunday the Jamaican would definitely run both his preferred 200 meters and the distance he covered in 9.72 seconds in May.

That set up a 100 meters showdown with compatriot Asafa Powell and world champion Tyson Gay from the United States in what is now the most eagerly-awaited event in the athletics program.

Bolt, however, seemed less certain when asked about it a media conference on Tuesday.

"I still have to decide," he said.

When it was pointed out that Mills had already said he would run both, he said: "Well it seems like I'm doubling then.

"I thought I was 80 percent sure I would be doubling, now I'm 100 percent."

It would have been hard for Bolt, world championship silver medalist over 200m, to turn down the chance to become the first man since Carl Lewis in 1984 to win both sprints, having blasted into the 100m reckoning with his world record run in New York after only a handful of outings over the distance.

"Yes, I'm good at the 100," he said.

"But the 200 is closer to my heart and the 100 is a factor of me not wanting to do the 400 meters really," added the 1.96m 21-year-old who looks ideally built for the one-lap race.

"The training for the 400 is too hard. I'm not lazy - though I used to be."

Mills has not always agreed with that assessment but Bolt said the pair had a great relationship.

Describing Mills as like a "second father", Bolt said the 100 meters mystery was the first "miscommunication" he had had with him.

His claim of ignorance, however, began to look a little thin when he was presented with a customized pair of golden Puma spikes inscribed "Beijing 100m".

(Editing by Greg Stutchbury)