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Usain Bolt makes retirement ‘belly’ bet

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Some of Usain Bolt‘s closest friends aren’t exactly confident he will stay in shape in retirement after this season.

“I have a bet with my managers,” Bolt said on the BBC. “They give me two years before I get a belly, so I can’t let that happen.”

Remember, Bolt is known for not being the healthiest eater. In the last Olympic cycle, he enlisted a chef to keep him away from Kentucky Fried Chicken. Bolt also famously wrote that he ate 1,000 McDonald’s chicken nuggets at the 2008 Beijing Games.

The eight-time Olympic champion’s first scheduled race this season is June 10 in Kingston, what he says is the final meet in Jamaica of his career.

Bolt has not other scheduled meets (yet) before the world championships in London in August, when he is expected to race only the 100m.

“Everybody wants me to continue, but it’s not as simple as it is, you know what I mean? For me, I’ve done what I wanted to do, you know what I mean? I’ve done great in the sport,” Bolt said on the BBC. “People just want to see more and more, you know what I mean? But you as a person have to decide that this is it. I don’t want to continue and then at the end I start losing, because I hate losing.”

Bolt said two years ago that he couldn’t envision ending his career with a loss.

It’s a distinct possibility with Bolt turning 31 in August, slowing in recent years, and the rise of 22-year-old Andre De Grasse of Canada. Not to mention 35-year-old rival Justin Gatlin of the U.S.

De Grasse and Gatlin face off in the Diamond League opener Friday (preview here).

“If you look at a lot of top athletes, that’s the one thing they use to damage their career just a little bit,” Bolt said. “By being so dominant throughout their career, retire, then miss the sport and then come back into the sport to something different, you know what I mean? So I don’t think my coach would coach me [in a comeback], either.”

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Yulia Efimova wags finger as Lilly King rivalry heats up (video)

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The Lilly KingYulia Efimova rivalry is back on, but this time the Russian is wagging her finger.

Efimova missed the 100m breaststroke world record by .01 in the semifinals at the world swimming championships in Budapest on Monday.

Efimova celebrated her time by finger wagging, an homage to King’s famous move in the ready room at the Rio Olympics.  She and King will go head to head in the final as the top two seeds on Tuesday after King won her later semifinal in a personal-best time .17 slower than Efimova.

“I’m always looking at the results from the heat before,” King told media in Budapest, adding that she wasn’t shaved for Monday’s semifinals. “I saw a little finger wag. I saw it. It’s just motivating me more, so that’s OK.”

King, who criticized Efimova’s presence in Rio after serving a doping ban, beat the Russian in the Olympic 100m breaststroke final last year.

Efimova served a 16-month ban for testing positive for the banned steroid DHEA in 2013. She again tested positive in February 2016 for meldonium, though she said she stopped taking it before it became a banned substance Jan. 1 and was absolved along with other athletes.

“You’ve been caught for drug cheating, I’m just not a fan,” King memorably said in Rio, adding last fall, “[Doping] was on all of our minds. We had team meetings talking about what it was going to be like. We were going to be racing dopers, and we all knew it.”

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Katinka Hosszu wins 200m IM as swimmer leaves pool mid-race (video)

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Hungarian Katinka Hosszu delivered the gold-medal performance a raucous Budapest crowd hoped for at the world swimming championships.

Canadian Sydney Pickrem, a medal favorite, appeared to get out of the pool after 50 meters. Swimming Canada later said she “took on water” approaching the first wall.

“Unfortunately it inhibited her to the point where she wasn’t able to continue in the race,” a press release said.

Hosszu won her third straight world title in the 200m individual medley, clocking 2:07.00 at the Danube Arena. The Olympic champion and world-record holder was followed by Japan’s Yui Ohashi (2:07.91) and American Madisyn Cox (2:09.71).

Hosszu was the overwhelming favorite, given she held the three fastest times in the world this year going into Monday’s final. She became the first woman to win 10 individual world championships medals, a mark that Sarah SjostromKatie Ledecky and Yulia Efimova can surpass later in the meet. Retired Australian Leisel Jones won nine, all in breaststroke.

Hosszu scratched her other event Monday night, the 100m backstroke, one of three events she won at the Rio Olympics. Hosszu could earn medals in the 200m backstroke and 400m individual medley later this week.

Pickrem ranked No. 3 in the world this year and had the third-fastest time in the semifinals behind Hosszu and American Melanie Margalis, who finished fourth.

“Just another stepping stone,” said Cox, who finished her University of Texas career this year and made her major international debut in Budapest. “Of course, I want to be better. That time will come.”

Women’s 200m Individual Medley Results
Gold: Katinka Hosszu (HUN) — 2:07.00
Silver: Yui Ohashi (JPN) — 2:07.91
Bronze: Madisyn Cox (USA) — 2:09.71
4. Melanie Margalis (USA) — 2:09.82
5. Runa Imai (JPN) — 2:09.99
6. Kim Seoyeong (KOR) — 2:10.40
7. Siobhan-Marie O’Connor (GBR) — 2:10.41
DQ. Sydney Pickrem (CAN)

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