Still days away from running, Usain Bolt was at the center of a hullabaloo at the Commonwealth Games on Wednesday for apparently criticizing his games experience so far.
The Times of London says it spoke to Bolt as he left the athletes’ village in Glasgow on Tuesday. It quoted him as saying he was “not really” having fun in Glasgow and the games were “a bit s—.”
Bolt tweeted on Wednesday that “I’m waking up to this nonsense” and called the report “lies.”
Bolt spent Tuesday mixing with Prince William, his wife Kate, and Prince Harry. On Wednesday, he watched the Jamaica netball team lose to New Zealand, and was blocked by his manager from the media, saying only “Awesome” to questions about his opinion of the games.
His status as the world’s fastest man was safe on the track, where Michael Mathieu of the Bahamas was the fastest qualifier into the semifinals of the 200 meters.
Mathieu, Andre de Grasse of Canada and Danny Talbot of England were the leading runners among 24 to advance to Thursday’s semifinals, ahead of the final that evening.
The Bahamian timed 20.55 seconds, well outside the world record of 19.19 held by Bolt, who is limiting himself, following a left foot injury, to only Jamaica’s 4×100-meter relay on the weekend.
Also, the Canadian team of Meaghan Benfeito and Roseline Filion won gold in the women’s synchronized 10-meter platform, the first diving event at the Royal Commonwealth Pool in Edinburgh.
Australian diver Matt Mitcham, the 10-meter platform gold medalist from the 2008 Beijing Olympics, was among the qualifiers for the men’s 1-meter springboard.
Late Wednesday, two 2012 Olympic champions – long jumper Greg Rutherford of England and shot putter Valerie Adams of New Zealand will try to win Commonwealth gold at Hampden Park.
Rutherford, who has been beset by foot and hamstring injuries since his London gold, jumped a British record 8.51 meters last month. He was able to jump only 8.05 in qualifying for the final.
“I’m in pretty good form, held together by tape, but feeling pretty good,” Rutherford said.
Adams will attempt to continue an amazing run. She is unbeaten in her last eight major championships – Olympics, world titles and the Commonwealth Games. The last time she finished in second place at any major event was the 2005 world titles.