USAIN BOLT has been named the ‘greatest’ sprinter in the history of track and field by legendary US athlete Michael Johnson.
Johnson’s tribute to the Jamaican runner was made after he was shortlisted for the Laureus World Sportsman of the Year award.
American basketball player Stephen Curry, Argentine footballer Lionel Messi, British motor racer Lewis Hamilton, Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic, and American golfer Jordan Spieth have also been shortlisted.
“Neither Jesse Owens, Carl Lewis nor myself have [sic] produced, in my opinion, the consistency and longevity that Usain Bolt has,” said Johnson, a member of the Laureus World Sports Academy.
“So to this point he has to be considered the greatest.”
Bolt currently holds the 100m and 200m world records and boasts six Olympic and 11 world titles.
“If he’s healthy, I don’t think anyone can stop him in the Rio Olympics,” said Johnson, a four-time Olympic and eight-time World Champion, who still holds the world 400m record of 43.18 seconds.
The finalists for Sportswoman of the Year included Jamaican sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, as well as the United States trio of swimmer Katie Ledecky, footballer Carli Lloyd and tennis player Serena Williams.
The award winners will be announced at a gala function in Berlin on April 18.