DOHA: The outdoor athletics season gets under way proper on Friday when the Qatar Sports Club hosts the first leg of the prestigious 14-meet Diamond League, with all eyes on this summer’s Olympic Games in London.
Jamaican sprint star Usain Bolt will be absent, however, having preferred to make his season debut on home soil last weekend and European bow in Ostrava, Czech Republic, later this month. But a top-quality field has nevertheless been assembled for the kick-off of the global circuit before the London Olympics.
World 800m champion David Rudisha (left) of Kenya was in no doubt about what the season had in store.
“This year is an Olympic year and that is my main focus, my priority,” Rudisha said. “Doha is the first stepping stone towards that goal.”
“Comments echoed by many of the athletes gathered in Doha where day-time temperatures are currently topping 40 degrees Celsius and organisers are hoping to attract more people into the stadium than last year’s distinctly average attendance.”