Smooth progression for Gemili

England's Adam Gemili looked in excellent condition at Hampden Park

England's Adam Gemili looked in excellent condition at Hampden Park

First published in National Sport News © by

England's Adam Gemili breezed into the 100 metres semi-finals at the Commonwealth Games as the fastest qualifier at Hampden Park - and then declared there was plenty more to come.

Beneath overcast skies, Gemili powered through the first 60 metres before easing off the gas to win his heat in 10.15 seconds.

The 20-year-old's team-mates Richard Kilty and Harry Aikines-Aryeetey also advanced to Monday's semis, although looked less impressive.

Kilty, the world indoor champion, came home in a tie for second in his heat in 10.34secs, while Aikines-Aryeetey got off to a poor start and finished third in 10.33, meaning he had to rely on a fastest loser spot to progress.

With Usain Bolt absent, the Jamaican trio of Nickel Ashmeade, Jason Livermore and Kemar Bailey-Cole all won their heats with ease, but Trinidad and Tobago's Richard Thompson, who has run 9.82 this year, the second fastest time in the world, looked short of fitness as he scraped through in third place after clocking 10.33.

Gemili, who was greeted by a huge roar when introduced to the packed crowd inside Scotland's national stadium, is one of the biggest stars in the England team, especially in the wake of the withdrawals of Mo Farah and Katarina Johnson-Thompson.

He said: " That was great, I wanted to qualify and the best way to do that is come and win your heat, so I went out there, really executed the first half of my race and just eased up for the second half, trying to save as much energy as I can.

"I probably should have eased up a bit more actually, but I'm fit enough to come back tomorrow and make the final.

"If I execute (my race) well, hopefully I should be able to push my time close to my personal best (of 10.04) and hopefully quicker."

On the reception he received, the former footballer added: " I've never heard something like that since the Olympics.

"I was doing my laces and I looked up and the camera was in front of me and I just heard a massive roar. It was unbelievable. It took me by surprise a little bit. Hampden Park has a big history of football so it's nice that I can come out here and experience that."

Kilty was less impressed with his run, calling it "sluggish".

"Hopefully tomorrow I will run a lot quicker," said the Stockton-on-Tees sprinter, who has struggled to transfer his indoor form into the outdoor season.

There were only a smattering of empty seats inside Hampden, despite huge queues to get into the venue, with some fans apparently waiting for more than two hours.

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