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MALCOLM HELPS GUIDE BRITISH SPRINT QUARTET TO BRONZE

3 Sep 2007

Great Britain's men's 4x100m team secured bronze in a thrilling final at the World Championships in Japan.

Christian Malcolm, Craig Pickering, Marlon Devonish and Mark Lewis-Francis clocked a time of 37.90 seconds - third fastest on the UK all-time list.

Christian Malcolm

The race was won by the United States in 37.78 while Jamaica's Asafa Powell pipped Lewis-Francis for silver.

Britain's women's team finished fourth in their 4x100m final, a race also won by the US with Jamaica second.

The British men's bronze equalled their performance of two years ago in Helsinki, with Pickering coming in to replace retiring training partner Jason Gardener.

The quartet's efforts at a relay camp on the eve of the championships paid off as a string of safe handovers saw Lewis-Francis come off the final bend in second.

Lewis-Francis, 24, gritted his teeth but could not fend off world record holder Powell at the death.

"I could feel Asafa Powell breathing down my neck," Lewis-Francis told BBC Sport. "Our coach just told us to dig in and focus on our race.

"I just thought 'carry on running down the home straight and try and hold them off'. I was getting a bit tight but the big chest helped in the end."

Devonish, who finished sixth in the men's 100m final, added: "It's gone smoothly, we worked hard and it's a nice way to end the championships."

The Americans' victory saw Tyson Gay collect his third world championship gold to add to his 100m and 200m titles.

Jamaica also set a new national record of 37.89 in second despite some untidy baton changes.