Tue | Sep 28, 2021

Parchment takes determination to Tokyo

Published:Thursday | July 29, 2021 | 12:10 AMHubert Lawrence/Gleaner Writer
Hansle Parchment (left) competing in the semi-finals of the men’s 110m hurdles event at the National Senior Championships at the National Stadium in St Andrew on Saturday, June 26.
Hansle Parchment (left) competing in the semi-finals of the men’s 110m hurdles event at the National Senior Championships at the National Stadium in St Andrew on Saturday, June 26.
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Hansle Parchment knows what’s at stake in Tokyo. That’s the assessment from his coach, Fitz Coleman, who says the tall 31-year-old 110m hurdler wants to perform when Athletics at the Olympic Games get under way later this week.

Parchment is Jamaica’s barrier breaker in the sprint hurdles with Jamaica’s first Olympic medal, a bronze he garnered in 2012, the nation’s first World Athletics Championships medal, a 2015 silver, and the first sub-13 clocking by a Jamaican, Parchment’s personal best of 12.94s from the 2014 Paris Diamond League meet.

Those performances made him a star but injuries have knocked the Port Morant native off stride.

Parchment finished third at the National Senior Championships (Trials) and Coleman predicts good things for his charge in Tokyo.

“Especially over the last couple of years and we actually battled the issues, the challenges, the injuries to get him where he is and he’s determined,” Coleman said. “He has the mindset. You know, he has that kind of fixation. Once he’s there, he’s going to give it his all.”

Parchment clocked 13.19 and 13.16s at Trials in the heats and finals, respectively, and since then added a 13.32s run in Atlanta, Georgia.

PARCHMENT IS READY

Coleman believes that, after missing the 2016 Olympics due to injury, Parchment is ready. He received the top three medical exemption as provided for under the rules of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association. However, he wasn’t able to prove his fitness in time and was replaced.

“Looking on and reflecting, he felt that this would have been his third Olympics with a possibility of working towards his third medal,” Coleman said of the 2018 Commonwealth Games runner-up. “So he’s definitely excited about the whole situation as is, and as I said to you earlier, he’s looking forward to it. He’s motivated. He’s keen. He wants to perform. He knows what’s at stake.”

The veteran trainer has two athletes in Tokyo with emerging 400m runner Candice McLeod set to make her Olympic debut. McLeod vaulted up to number 9 on the all-time Jamaican performance list with her time of 49.91s at Trials. Coleman says The University of the West Indies student athlete is bubbling with excitement.

“If I’m going to be really honest and candid with you about it, she’s excited because it’s a dream come true for her and something that she actually wanted and she worked towards it.”

On a personal note, Coleman is pleased to have both Parchment and McLeod in Tokyo.

“You’re talking here about the Olympics and it’s what you would call the crème de la crème of the sport and, to have not just an athlete, but to have two athletes there, it’s a major accomplishment,” he said with quiet pride.

sports@gleanerjm.com