Athletics: Young star Lawson to light up Nitro Series

Jarrion Lawson competes at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Team Trials. Photo / Getty Images
Jarrion Lawson competes at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Team Trials. Photo / Getty Images

Having been compared to the legendary Jesse Owens, multi-talented American speedster Jarrion Lawson is set to light up next month's Nitro Athletics series in Melbourne.

Last year, Lawson became the first man in 80 years to do the 100m, 200m and long jump treble at the NCAA championships in the United States.

He followed in the footsteps of Owens, who went on to win four gold medals later in 1936 at the Berlin Olympics.

The 22-year-old Lawson finished fourth in the long jump at the Rio Olympics and could well have pocketed the gold medal if his huge final leap had not been adjudged a foul after he scraped a trailing finger in the sand.

"Rio was a great experience for me - I loved it," Lawson said.

"It was my first Olympic experience so I made sure I took every bit of it in.

"The long jump was a great competition with great competitors.

"Of course I thought I had won at the end, but that finger kept me from moving onto the medal stand.

"However, I felt that I did my best, and I captured the moment as best as possible."

Lawson will square off against 2015 world championships silver medallist Fabrice Lapierre in the long jump at the Nitro series at Lakeside Stadium.

Nine-time Olympic champion Bolt will announce the remaining members of his star- studded 24-strong squad next week.

In addition to Lawson, Bolt's team already also includes Rio 400m hurdles gold medallist Kerron Clement, 2008 Olympic 100m hurdles champ Dawn Harper-Nelson and crack Jamaican sprinters Asafa Powell and Michael Frater.

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