Kirani James talks up Grenada relay team

Shanghai, May 19 (IANS/CMC) World and Olympic 400 metre champion Kirani James has warned that Grenada is capable of producing a relay team as a force to be reckoned with in world athletics.

The Grenadian quarter-miler has identified three of the country’s overseas-based athletes who he believes can form a quartet with himself to compete against the best in the world, reports CMC.

They include Rondell Bartholomew who has recovered from injury and has confirmed his participation in the 400 metres line-up for the third stop on the IAAF Diamond League, the Adidas Grand Prix at Icahn Stadium in New York May 25.

The other two athletes are Joel Redhead who finished third in the 200 metres at the recent Cayman Invitational Meet and Brandon Taplin who clocked a personal indoor best in winning the 400 metres in 46.85 seconds at the recent Texas A and M Invitational Meet.

“I’m looking forward to the day that Grenada will feature at a major championship,” James said in a statement on the IAAF website.

“We have been trying to qualify for the past couple of years, but it’s difficult to get everybody on the same page at the same time. Apart from me, we have some great 400m guys like Rondell Bartholomew, Bralon Taplin, Joel Redhead.”

James, who opened the season by winning the 400m at the inaugural Chris Brown Invitational in Bahamas last month, powered to victory against his main rivals from London 2012 at Shanghai’s Diamond League meet Saturday

The Grenadian athlete, who has finished his studies at the University of Alabama for the year, says he is confident a Grenada relay team can make its mark on world athletics.

“Rondell has been hurt for a while, which is a shame, but we have some talented guys so if we can all get together in good form, I think we could be really competitive against the best in the world,” James said.

“We set a national record of 3:04.69 a couple of years ago, but I think on a good day we can go a lot faster.”



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