US announce Olympic athletics squad

US announce Olympic athletics squad

Washington, July 13 (IANS) Team USA have named five defending Olympic champions in their 126-member track and field squad for next month’s Rio 2016 Games.

London 2012 gold medallists Ashton Eaton (decathlon), Allyson Felix (400m and 4x400m relay), Brittney Reese (long jump), Christian Taylor (triple jump) and Jenn Suhr (pole vault) were named after the completion of the USA Olympic trials, reports Xinhua.

Eaton will be aiming for the first back-to-back decathlon gold medal since Britain’s Daley Thompson achieved the feat in 1984.

Team USA also includes five current world champions and several former Olympic gold medallists, including sprinter Justin Gatlin.

The 34-year-old, who won the 100m title at Athens 2004, is the owner of the fastest 100m this year, clocking 9.80 seconds at the US Olympic trials earlier this month. He will compete in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m in Rio.

Some 84 of those named in the squad will be making their first Olympic appearance.

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