Rio de Janeiro: Usain Bolt qualified fastest for the men’s 100m sprint final in Rio as he continued his bid for a third straight Olympic gold medal in the blue riband event.

The 29-year-old Jamaican on Sunday clocked 9.86 seconds in his semifinal, much to the delight of a capacity crowd at the Olympic Stadium, Xinhua news agency reported.

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Canada’s Andre de Grasse posted the second quickest time, six hundredths of a second behind Bolt.

Justin Gatlin of the US, considered Bolt’s main rival for the gold medal, was third fastest in 9.94 seconds.

Bolt is aiming to repeat his 100m, 200m and 4x100m victories at the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Games.

He recovered from a hamstring injury last month by winning the 200m at the Anniversary Games in London.

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