The Japan NewsAbdul Hakim Sani Brown became the second Japanese sprinter to break 10 seconds in the 100 meters when he clocked 9.99 in the final at the Southeastern Conference Championships on Saturday in Fayetteville, Ark.
The 20-year-old Sani Brown, a sophomore at the University of Florida, led a 1-2 finish with teammate Raymond Ekevwo by running 9.99 with a tailwind of 1.8 mps, eclipsing his previous career-best of 10.05.
In his qualifying heat the previous day, he clocked 10.10.
Sani Brown joins Yoshihide Kiryu as the only Japanese to break the 10-second barrier. Kiryu finished in 9.98 at the Japan Intercollegiate Championships in September 2017, which stands as the Japan record.
Sani Brown, whose father is from Ghana and mother is Japanese, burst onto the athletics scene in 2015 when he won both the 100 and 200 meters at the IAAF World U18 Championships in Cali, Colombia.
In 2017, Sani Brown marked his place in Japanese athletics history when he became the first sprinter in 14 years to complete the men’s 100-200 double at the national championships — at the tender age of 18. In doing so, he defeated every member of the Japan team that won a silver medal in the 4x100 relay at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
At the IAAF World Championships that year in London, Sani Brown finished seventh in the 200. He was the first Japanese to make the 200 final at the worlds since Shingo Suetsugu won a bronze at the 2003 Paris championships.
And, at 18 years 5 months, he was the youngest 200 finalist in history, breaking the previous record held by superstar Usain Bolt, who was 18 years 11 months when he made his first final.
Sani Brown was unable to defend his national titles last year due to injury.
But he got off to a good start this year, finishing second at the SEC Indoor Championships in the 60. In his first two outdoor meets in the 100, both in Gainesville, Fla., he placed second at the Pepsi Florida Relays and first at the Tom Jones Memorial.Speech