Gatecrasher Greene; Mighty Maurice Proves He's the World's Fastest and Says: They Were Going to Party So I Had to Invite Myself
Byline: NEIL WILSON
MAURICE GREENE flew back to the United States yesterday, not by Concorde, as befits the world's fastest man, but on a slower flight so that he could catch up on lost sleep.
'I need to fit in some sleep before Friday because I need to get back on the training track,' he said. 'There's work to be done. This is only the beginning.
'I always said that I wanted to take the 100 metres to a whole other level and we haven't finished with it yet.' Greene had run the 100m in a record 9.79 seconds in Athens on Wednesday night and, two hours later, produced his fastest 200m for two years. But the tiredness he felt was less in the legs than the right hand that had been shaken seemingly by half the citizens of the Greek capital, from its Lord Mayor to an ice-cream seller.
'It's been a hard day at the office,' he said as he headed for bed at 3am to snatch a three-hour nap before he had to be up again to catch his flight.
It had also been a profitable one.
Greene had gone to Athens contracted to run only the 200m. It was not until the day before that he made a spur-of-the-moment decision to enter the race that was to be the world's fastest. He
said: 'They were going to party and the party wasn't complete without me.'
Another factor could have been that TV network boss Minos Kiryako, president of the Panellinios club which organised the meeting, put up a bonus for a world record of $100,000.
Kiryako said: 'I think he always knew he could break the record.
When Ato Boldon was asked about Ben Johnson's 9.79, he said it was impossible. When Maurice was asked, he said he thought only of accomplishing it. …