DINA ASHER-SMITH returned from injury brilliantly as Team GB romped into the women’s 4x100m relay final by winning their heat in a British record.
The Brits beat the USA into second in their Tokyo 2020 heat – with Jamaica also qualifying for Friday’s medal showdown in third, despite a sloppy change-over.
Londoner Dina Asher-Smith, right, hands the baton to GB team-mate Daryll NeitaCredit: Getty
On her return from injury Asher-Smith showed the intensity that sent Team GB flying into the finalCredit: PA
British 100m record-holder Asher-Smith told the BBC: “There was never any doubt in my mind that I’d be lining up here today because the relay’s really important.
“We got a bronze medal in Rio. These ladies are in great shape, they’re incredibly talented, so I knew I had to rest up and get ready for the team event. I’ve been training hard to get ready.”
Team-mate Daryll Neita added: “I really wanted to bring it to the finish for these girls. We’ve worked so hard.
“We haven’t had that much practice and neither has the rest of the world in the pandemic.
“To come out here today in the heat and set a British record, to have amazing changes – we’ve got confidence.”
Asher-Smith’s hopes in the individual events were ruined by hamstring problems.
She failed to reach the 100m final and withdrew totally from the 200m.
But she shone in Thursday morning’s relay heat, alongside Asha Philip, Imani-Lara Lansiquot and Neita.
And two-time world 110m hurdles champion Colin Jackson raved about Asher-Smith’s comeback.
The Welsh legend told the BBC: “Strong performance from Dina Asher-Smith. You can see this team is well-drilled, controlled.
“They’re highly skilled and they’ve put a lot of effort into this performance.”