00:04 GMT01 December 2020
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    Usain Bolt, the Jamaican world-record sprint holder and eight-time Olympic gold medalist, kicked off a new pro sports career as wing forward for Australia's Central Coast Mariners football club, unleashed onto the field for the first time by Mariner head coach Mike Mulvey in the 70th minute on the left side of midfield.

    Bolt's debut was greeted with fireworks and the roar of 10,000 fans at the stadium in Gosford, north of Sydney. The Central Coast Mariners were leading 6-0 against Central Coast Select as the track legend entered the game.

    Various footage with highlights of Bolt, 32, playing his first-ever professional football game immediately went viral. The Jamaican star sprinter, as a winger and striker, however, got only a few ball touches, often lost possession and didn't appear to be reading his teammates signal all that well. However, he came very close to scoring in stoppage time. Moreover, Bolt's speed dominated as the Jamaican star chased very solid and confident opposing players.

    The 11-time world sprint champion played for just over 20 minutes for the Mariners' in a 6-1 win over Central Coast Select on Friday. After the debut, Bolt told journalists that he enjoyed every minute of the game despite some nervousness.

    According to post-game comments by Central Coast Mariners head coach Mulvey, Bolt is expected to upgrade his technique and game skills over the next four-five months. By that time the sprint legend hopes to sign a contract with the football club.

    Local media noted that Bolt's presence generated huge publicity numbers for the struggling Mariners, who were at the bottom of the 10-team Australian A-league standings last season.


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