“Perform Better Under Pressure”- Noah Lyles on Cloud Nine After Sensational 200-Meters Victory at Doha Diamond League

Published 05/13/2022, 3:47 PM EDT
EUGENE, OREGON – JUNE 27: Noah Lyles reacts after winning the Men’s 200 Meter Final during day ten of the 2020 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Team Trials at Hayward Field on June 27, 2021 in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Noah Lyles won the men’s 200m race at the 2022 Doha Diamond League, edging out Fred Kerley with a time of 19.72 seconds. Kerley finished in 19.75 seconds, but unfortunately for both the sprinters, the tailwind was just over the legal limit at 2.1 m/s. While his time won’t be counted as a record, it was still a big win for Lyles. Olympic champion Andre de Grasse, in a turn of events, trailed home in fourth.

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The athlete said after the race, “I perform better under pressure. The crowd makes me excited. Actually, I feel good and satisfied about my position right now. My plan for the world championship is to win, to always win.”

Looking at the world championships

Lyles has already declared his intention to win the world title, but it’s going to be a heated match this summer. Let’s not forget, Lyles will be going up against compatriot Erriyon Knighton. The 18-year-old sprinter is the clear favorite for the title after his 19.49-second run, producing one of the fastest times in history for 200m.

DOHA, QATAR – OCTOBER 05: Noah Lyles of the United States celebrates as he crosses the line to win gold in the Men’s 4×100 Metres Relay final during day nine of 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019 at Khalifa International Stadium on October 05, 2019 in Doha, Qatar. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

However, Lyles definitely proved his world-class form in today’s race, and he is not one to back down easily. His personal best of 19.50 seconds puts him as the fifth-fastest man ever, just behind Knighton, and he did it with a 0.1 m/s headwind.

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Lyles clocked in 19.86 seconds just a few days ago at the PURE Athletics Global Invitational, where he placed first and his brother took third. Clearly, the 2022 season is going to be an improvement over last year. His Olympic bronze at 19.74 seconds was a bit of a disappointment when Lyles has put up much better times in the past.

His double gold in Doha in 2019 over 200m and in the 4 x 100m relay had set expectations much higher for Lyles at the Olympics. This season seems to be a turnaround for the athlete, though.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Athletics – Men’s 200m – Final – Olympic Stadium, Tokyo, Japan – August 4, 2021. Noah Lyles of the United States celebrates with his national flag after winning bronze REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

If he keeps up with this form, there is no doubt that Lyles is one of the top contenders for the world title. Will he be able to challenge Knighton as the 2022 World Athletics Championships draws closer?

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Mansi Jain

377 articles

Mansi Jain is a US Sports author for EssentiallySports. She has a Bachelor's degree in Multimedia and Mass Communication from the University of Delhi and has also previously interned for HT Media. She is always one mention of Yuzuru Hanyu away from delivering an hour-long speech about the athlete's legacy.

Edited By: Melroy Fernandes

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