Minister’s Statement follows:
“Today, we witnessed the final act in the competitive athletic career of Usain Bolt. It didn’t go according to plan as he collapsed with an injury while anchoring the Jamaica team in the 4×100 metres. He apologised to his team mates and all of Jamaica as he limped off the track.
I do not accept his apology. Like his team mates, I will also say to Usain, there is no need for an apology because he gave everything — as he’s always done.
Instead, I would Usain to accept our best wishes for a speedy recovery. I would ask him to accept our gratitude for an amazing career which raised our national profile; a career in which he proudly carried his Jamaican-ness around the world; a career which contributed much to development of a sport industry in Jamaica; a career which rescued global athletics.
I believe we all have been honoured to watch Usain do extraordinary things for the better part of the last 15 years. He redefined speed and brought great entertainment to world athletics. His impressive records might be broken one day, but his place in our hearts is secured for ever. We will forever remember his breathtaking brilliance. Usain will forever be our champion.
Our relatively young team which competed at these World Championships did not dominate as other Jamaican teams have done, but I have every confidence that they will learn from this experience and will be much stronger go forward. We must never give up on them.
Let me congratulate our women’s 4×100 metres on taking the bronze medal today. It was also heartening to see a Jamaican in the men’s 5000 metres and I commend Kemoy Campbell on that achievement.”