Carmelita Jeter of the United States and Veronica Campbell-Brown of Jamaica lead the pack in the Women's 200m Semifinals on Day 11 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 7, 2012 (Getty Images) © Copyright
Report Defending champion Veronica Campbell

London 2012 - Event Report - Women's 200m Semi-Finals

Defending champion Veronica CampbellBrown unleashed a season's best of 22.32 to send out a clear message she is ready and has a very hungry appetite to win what will be a record third 200m gold medal in tomorrow night's final.

Campbell-Brown came off the bend to close down the fast starting Carmelita Jeter and the pair matched each other almost stride for stride until the Jamaican dipped ahead of her Team USA rival to win by 0.07 with Myriam Soumare going through as a fastest loser in a SB 22.56.

"I am happy I think I executed a decent race," said the 30-year-old already a half lap legend. "I'll remain confident and try to pull it all together. It will be an extremely good event. My intention is to stay focused and to run my heart out."

But Campbell-Brown will be under no illusions that to go ahead of the two victories East Germany's Barbel Eckert claimed in 1976 and 1980 she will probably have to breach the 22-second barrier given the outstanding form her main rivals are also in.

Despite 400m gold medallist Sanya Richards-Ross clocking 22.30 the fastest mark of the night, if there is a heir apparent to Campbell-Brown the most likely candidate will be Allyson Felix.

The 26-year-old American has made no secret she hasn't enjoyed playing second fiddle to her older opponent and leading the World rankings with 21.69 - the fourth fastest of all-time - is determined this will be the occasion for adding Olympic gold to her three World Championship titles.

"I just wanted to run a good 120 (metres) and then see how I felt," she said after completing a perfect bend and entering the home straight a metre ahead of Murielle Ahoure before pulling a little further away.

Felix whose time of 22.31 was a solid 0.18 faster than the Ivory Coast sprinter, added: "I feel good and excited. I've spent a long time waiting for this moment. I just want to execute, that's what it's all about."

Third placed Semoy Hackett equalling Trinidad & Tobago's National record of 22.55 was also rewarded when making the cut as the second fastest loser.

Richards-Ross suggested she might emulate the 200/400 double fellow American Valerie Brisco-Hooks achieved on home Los Angeles soil 28-years-ago when taking the third semi just 0.04 ahead of Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce who looking in very good shape is determined to add to the 100m crown she retained on Saturday night.

"I wanted top two so as not to get a bad lane," said Richards-Ross coached by sprint guru Clyde Hart and her attention already focused on the final. "I'm not trying to send any messages, my coach told me to be patient.

"I am happy I got the win - I feel pretty good. I've been physically and mentally preparing for this. I feel no pressure, it's a lot of fun for me."

But she stressed: "I really want to grab a medal tomorrow but, either way, I'm still an Olympic champion. I know I'm the strongest in the field, so I'm going to give it all I've got in the home stretch."

David Martin for the IAAF