Gatlin wins 100m in Doha in 9.74

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justin-gatlin.jpgDOHA, Qatar (AP) - Justin Gatlin lived up to the pre-season hype, winning the 100 meters in a world-leading 9.74 seconds at the Diamond League opener on Friday, a personal-best time and a new meet record in Doha.

There was a big gap between the American and his chasers, with US relay teammate Michael Rodgers second in 9.96 and Keston Bledman of Trinidad and Tobago third.

Gatlin was the fastest man in the world last season over 100 and 200 meters, but went even faster on a sweltering hot night at Qatar Sports Club.

Jasmin Stowers showed she's a rising star by winning the 100 hurdles in a personal-best 12.35 seconds, a new Diamond League record. Olympic champion Sally Pearson and Dawn Harper-Nelson were both outside the top three. Stowers has improved her PB three times in 2015 after 12.40 and 12.39 performances previously this year.

Allyson Felix breezed to victory in the 200 meters in a meet-record 21.98 seconds. It was Felix's first 200 of 2015, and she broke out into a big grin as she caught a glimpse of her winning time.

American Bershawn Jackson won the 400 hurdles, holding under pressure through the final 20 meters after clipping the last barrier.