NEPTUNE'S WILSON MAKES IT LOOK EASY
IN FIRST ROUND OF WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP 800
By ELLIOTT DENMAN
DOHA, QATAR - When does more mean less?
And less mean more?
Neptune's Ajee' Wilson answered both those questions in exactly 2:02.10 seconds Friday at Khalifa International Stadium.
Expanding not a single surplus ounce of unnecessary energy, the 10-time USA National Champion (at assorted distances)
coasted to a very easy win in her first-round race of the women's 800 meters, the event nearly all World Championships Form Chart pickers now pick her to win.
All such energy will be required from here on out. Specially so in the brutally hot and steamy Doha conditions.
Just eight out of the 24 Saturday semifinalists will advance into the Monday night finals.
This is Ms. Wilson's third trip to the Worlds - she placed fifth at Moscow in 2013 (one spot higher than her original placing after the ouster of a drug-suspendee), missed Beijing 2015, then ran third at London 2017.
So is this her time to run off with the gold medal?
Her legions of fans and admirers surely hope so.
But it definitely will not be easy.
Uganda\s Winnie Nanyondo (winner of her section in 2:00.36) impressed many, too. Likewise for old rival Natoya Goule of Jamaica (who ran 2:01.01.)
Two other Americans figure in all this, too.
Raevyn Rogers, Wilson's training partner in Philadelphia, advanced easily in 2:02.01. Moving up, too, was American Ce'Aira Brown (2:01.14.)
But already out are Britain's Lynsey Sharp and fourth American Hanna Green.
Never in it, of course, was two-time Olympic champion and 2011 and 2017 World Champion Caster Semenya of South Africa, as her XY chromosone status continues to keep her on the
All in all, Friday was a darn good day for Team USA, which suffered no major casualties. Favored Christian Coleman and Justin Gatlin easily advanced in the men's 100, Jeff Henderson and Steffin McCarter in the long jump, Christian Taylor, Will Claye and Donald Scott in the triple jump, Paul Chelimo and Hassan Mead in the 5,000 meters, and Rai Benjamin, TJ Holmes and Amere Lattin in the 400 hurdles.
On the USA women's side, too.,defending champion Emma Coburn and Courtney Frerichs advanced in the 3000 steeplechase, Vashti Cunningham and Tynita Butts in the high jump, Sandi Morris, Jenn Suhr and Katie Nageotte in the pole vault, and DeAnna Price and Gwen Berry in the hammer throw.
One day down, nine to go.
Stay tuned, fans, for some major excitement, just ahead.