Lyles and Coleman go head to head in the 60m at the World Athletics Indoor Championship in Glasgow

Lyles and Coleman go head to head in the 60m at the World Athletics Indoor Championship in Glasgow

This is the year when Noah Lyles, world 100m and 200m champion, plans to complete his title collection. And while his overarching ambition is an Olympic upgrade from bronze to gold later this year, his immediate challenge lies in Glasgow, where he will seek his first world indoor medal.

The 26-year-old from Gainesville, Florida – 2023 World Athlete of the Year in men’s track – is in the ideal position to further adorn his CV with a 60m victory at the World Athletics Indoor Championships Glasgow 24 as he tops this year’s world list with a personal best of 6.43.

Also on the list, thrillingly, is the fellow US sprinter whom he beat by 0.01 in setting that time at the US Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, Christian Coleman, who had run the world record of 6.34  in the same arena six years earlier.

The re-match between the current world 100m champion and the 2019 world champion will be one of the highlights of these championships, with hopes of further fast times soaring given the recent completion of a new track at the Glasgow Arena, which was built for the city’s hosting of the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Lyles had already made clear the winter work he had done on his start – supposedly the weakest part of his racing – by reducing his personal best to 6.44 in winning at the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix in Boston on  February 4, where those in his wake included the 2022 world 100m champion, Fred Kerley.

“My confidence has now skyrocketed," Lyles said after that race. “Let’s go get a world indoor medal.”

His confidence is now in orbit following his Albuquerque exploits. “This is my weakest event,” he said. “So come outdoors, whew, fireworks."

But it would not do to rule out the prospects for Coleman, a classic bullet from a gun over 60m, who went on to win the world indoor title in Birmingham soon after setting his world record.

And neither man will be able to rest easy given the presence in the field of the 22-year-old Jamaican Ackeem Blake, who has a best of 6.42 and who clocked 6.45 in finishing just 0.01 behind Lyles in Boston to place himself third in this year’s world list.

Meanwhile, the runaway train that is Kenya’s Ferdinand Omanyala is gathering speed. The 28-year-old Commonwealth Games 100m champion took 0.03 off his own national 60m record in clocking 6.51 to win in Bercy on 11 February.

Look out too for Japan’s Shuhei Tada, who has clocked a personal best of 6.53 this season, plus Liberia’s Emmanuel Matadi and Britain’s Jeremiah Azu, winner of the fourth World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold meeting in Torun in 6.57 which helped him to earn a wild card entry to Glasgow.

And do not ignore Italy’s European indoor champion Samuele Ceccarelli, who has only run 6.65 this season but has a best of 6.47; and Ireland’s 21-year-old Israel Olatunde, whose best this year is 6.71 but who ran a national record of 6.57 last season.