THE BEST OF 2010: British-Jamaican sprint rivalry took centre stage at Youth Olympics
THE inaugural Youth Olympic Games were supposed to be all about Team GB sprinter David Bolarinwa but not for the first time a Jamaican sprinter stole the show.
OUTGUNNED: Great Britain's David Bolarinwa was outgunned by Jamaican rival Odane Skeen at the inaugural Youth Olympic Games this summer (Reuters)
In the phoney war before the Singapore Games got going the GB ranks did all they could to play down the Cambridge Harrier's chances but ultimately actions spoke louder than words.
Who was chosen (by his teammates admittedly) to carry the flag? Yep, that's right David B. And who attended a GB press conference at the main press centre alongside, among others Locog chairman Lord Sebastian Coe, Winter Olympic gold medallist Amy Williams and BOA chairman Colin Moynihan? Again it was David B and as a result the hype around the 100m was like nothing else at the Games.
The overwhelming majority of international media used the trip to Singapore as a chance to sniff out bigger, senior Olympic stories and as a consequence were conspicuous by their absence from the mixed zones.
But the men's 100m bucked this trend and there was something approaching a huddle when Bolarinwa sailed through his heats, seemingly setting himself up for the expected tilt on the gold medal.
To put the Bolarinwa hype in context - the talk wasn't unjustified as, in the weeks prior to the Far East event, he had clocked the fastest under-18 in the world of the year with 10.39 seconds.
But unfortunately the fairytale wasn't to be. Ultimately Bolarinwa failed to roar in the Lion City. His planned moment in the spotlight was gatecrashed spectacularly by Jamaican Odane Skeen.
The 100m final, which Bolarinwa laid down such a marker in qualifying for, was ultimately a one-sided affair which Skeen won at a canter and with some style.
There was some gesticulating on the start line (not a lightning bolt more a vroom vroom car-type movement) and enough light between him and second-place athlete Masaki Nashimoto from Japan for some high knees celebration.
By now you've worked out that Bolarinwa was not in the top two. He was third, and a comparatively distant third in the world of 100m sprinting, scuppered ultimately by a sluggish-at-best start.
The 16-year-old (now 17) did his best to put a brave face on it in the busy mixed zone but youthful exuberance failed to hide his anger at having been shown up by a guy who had been ‘talking smack' to him in the athletes' village.
According to the GB youngster his patter was along the lines of ‘who's David Bolarinwa?' and words to that effect.
However, given that the Cambridge Harrier remained at the top of the world rankings throughout 2010 with that pre-Singapore 10.39-second dash suggested Skeen might find out just who David Bolarinwa is in the years to come. I, for one, wouldn't bet against it.