Justin Gatlin of the United States chooses to remain calm despite calls for a total ban of athletes who have violated the anti-doping policy of the Olympics as he prepares ahead of his much-awaited showdown with Usain Bolt of Jamaica in the ongoing Rio Olympics in Brazil.
Gatlin refused to comment on the statement made by fellow American athlete and swimming star Lilly King, who insisted that American athletes previously banned for drug offenses should have been kicked off the United States team for the Olympics. King stated that she respects sports federations on their decisions, but something has to be done to keep the Olympic spirit in all athletes intact.
“It is just something that needs to be set in stone that this is what we are going to do. Let’s settle this and be done with it. There should not be any bouncing back and forwards,” King said.
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For Gatlin, he would rather stay focus on how to beat Bolt in their upcoming showdown in the 100 and 200-meter sprint and in the 4×200 meter relay. He stated that he is not worried about the pressure and just wants to enjoy being able to run again in the Olympics. Gatlin, who served two suspensions over doping violations, openly stated that he will do everything to snag the gold medal from Bolt.
Gatlin told CNN that he is not at all bothered by the comparison between him and Bolt. The 34-year old sprinter noted that his goals that include to make his way to the finals and win a medal. He added that it will not be an easy task as other athletes will also be bringing in their A-game.
“It’s an Olympics, it’s going to be special, so I know everyone’s going to bring their ‘A’ game. So I’ve got to make sure I’m ready. This is my third Olympics, so I’m bringing the fun, carefree Justin Gatlin from 2004 and the ‘honored to be here’ Justin Gatlin from 2012,” Gatlin explained.
The Rio Olympics will be the redeeming stage for Gatlin to bounce back from his two previous suspensions. Gatlin aims to give the people a reason to celebrate and that is why he will do everything to run away with a medal in his respective event. He knows Bolt will stand in his way, but Gatlin will simply enjoy the game and snag that medal in the end.
Photo Courtesy: Augustas Didžgalvis/Wikimedia