Lewis-Francis eyes time of under 10 seconds

SPRINTER MARK Lewis-Francis believes the British crowd can play a big part in his plans to break the second barrier and reach the Olympic final in London.

The 29-year-old who won gold at the Athens Olympics, in the 4x100m relay eight years ago, won the 60m race at the indoor Aviva International meeting, in Glasgow, on Saturday, but has struggled with injury and consistency.

Lewis-Francis clocked 9.97 seconds in 2001 at the World Championships in Edmonton but that could not be classed as a personal best because of a faulty wind guage. He matched the time in Sheffield a year later but that run was wind-assisted.

His personal best in legal conditions is 10.04 seconds and he is aware that it could take a better time to secure a coveted place in the final.

“Every day for the last four years I have been thinking about making this Olympic final and just being a part of it,” said Lewis-Francis.

“It would be a great achievement if I could do that because the 100m is one of the highlights of the Olympics and everyone wants to watch it. Athletes like me want to be in that final and the aim for me is to stay focused and keep my mind on reaching that final.

“I competed in Athens in 2004 and it was an amazing experience but competing in the London Olympics with a home crowd will definitely help you raise your game and achieve targets that would otherwise be unachievable.”

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