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Usain Bolt’s Return to Athletics Won’t Be in His Normal Role

With eight months since his competitive retirement, Usain Bolt remains athletics’ biggest star.

He also remains the biggest star of the Commonwealth Games.

The 31-year-old’s official press conference on Thursday evening was the most heavily attended media opportunity of the Games — with officials bringing in temporary seating at the Gold Coast Convention Centre to accommodate the added interest from the world’s media.

Even Aussie superstar Sally Pearson didn’t receive the same honour when she made her shock announcement that she was pulling out of the competition.

Games officials revealed during the press conference that Bolt will for the first time in his career present medals during an official medal ceremony at Carrara Stadium on Thursday.

It has since been confirmed Bolt will present the medals for the women’s 200m event, scheduled to be decided at 9.38pm.

The man himself didn’t even realise it.

“Really,” he asked when the announcement was made.

When asked how it will feel handing over the bling, he said: “I don’t know. It should be weird”.

“I don’t know what I’m going to say, but I don’t want to be just like everybody and just say congratulations. I’ll try and come up with something smart to say.

“I know it’s the 200m finals tonight. I’m looking forward to that.”

Bahamas’ Shaunae Miller-Uibo and Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson are the favourites for the event, despite Jamaica’s Shericka Jackson qualifying fastest.

He said he was also looking forward to seeing sprint apprentice and second fastest man of all time Yohan Blake, who struggled to the bronze medal in the 100m final.

He famously told Blake he wouldn’t be allowed to return home to Jamaica if he failed to win the gold medal in the 100m on the Gold Coast.

“It was actually a joke. I didn’t know he was going to tell people that,” he said.

“I haven’t called him. I haven’t texted him. I’m waiting to see him at the village because I’m definitely going to make fun of him. It will be a good conversation.”

Despite retiring, Bolt is still the king of the track.Source:AFP

He’s on the Gold Coast for the Commonwealth Games but Usain Bolt is keen to explore the city’s more traditional attractions.

The sprint superstar is in town to support Jamaica’s athletics and netball teams and has already been enjoying the Surfers Paradise night-life including doing a spot of DJ-ing on Wednesday night.

Bolt said he was also keen to find out more about the bikini-clad Surfers Paradise meter maids.

“You guys are famous for that. What is that? I don’t know,” Bolt said on Tuesday.

Bolt said South Africa’s rise was not that much of a surprise. As athletics looks for its next global superstar following his retirement.

“It doesn’t have to be in the 100 or 200 metres. It doesn’t have to be in sprints,” he said.

“It just has to be someone with personality, someone with the heart and competition to do great. Hopefully someone will pick up the slack.”

As to his own future, Bolt, who recently had a trial with German soccer giants Borussia Dortmund, admits watching the athletics competition gives him “the urge” to run but there’s one sport he knows he’s not going to be making a career out of.

“I remember trying to play cricket two years ago. I wasn’t that good,” he said, in a blow to any Big Bash League clubs thinking of an audacious bid. “I’ve really stepped away from cricket. I enjoy watching it but I’m no good at cricket any more.”

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