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Makwala’s Diamond League final sprint

FINAL SALUTE: Makwala

Botswana’s sprint sensation, Isaac Makwala, will compete with other best world athletes in the 200m and 400m Wanda Diamond League 2021 today at Letzigrund Stadium in Zurich.

This is the same place where the 35-year-old Tutume native won his 400m race in the Diamond League with 43.95 time back in 2017.

Makwala has accumulated 10 and 9 points in the 200m and 400m respectively after participating in the two qualifying events.

He recently won an Olympic bronze medal in the men’s 400m relay and has since been in Europe training and participating in the Diamond League to accumulate points.

The 400m final will be the past weekend Brussels Diamond League meet repeat where the five athletes last met.

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The last race was won by USA’s Michael Cherry with Tokyo 2020 Olympics bronze medallist Kirani James coming second, Makwala third, Liemarvin Bonevacia of the Netherlands fourth and Trinidad and Tobago’s Deon Lendore fifth.

The winner will walk away with a Diamond Trophy and $30,000 prize.

Some athletes will also use the race to qualify for the World Athletics Championships Oregon 22 which Makwala has already qualified for.

Botswana’s 2012 Olympic silver medallist Nijel Amos will not be part of the finals due to an injury.

Amos participated in only one Diamond League race this season clocking the world leading 1:42.91 time in Monaco.

Speaking to Voice Sport, Makwala said this has been a hectic season as he went to the Olympics last month while in the campaign for the Diamond league final qualifiers.

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He said the line-up for both races is challenging as it has competitive athletes.

“What was important was to qualify for the final. The day has arrived and I will fight with all I have to win these races. The finals are always tough because the winner takes it all and there is not a second chance. It will be nice to win these races as it will be my last competition in the Diamond League before my retirement. The preparations have been going well, I was following the programme that I was given by the coach and it is time to deliver. My birthdays is on the 24th and winning this will be my best gift ever,” said Makwala.

The 400m race is scheduled for 1915hrs while the 200m is at 2152hrs.

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