Tokyo: US sprint and long jump legend Carl Lewis said on Monday that Asians badly needed "heroes" in track and field in their countries to become a world-class force in the high-profile sport.
"We had heroes (in the United States) when I was growing up. I saw athletes I wanted to emulate. I think that's important," Lewis told reporters in Tokyo after attending a clinic for junior athletes in Japan's tsunami-hit northeast.
"Look how many Asians there are (in the world). You can't get one fast one? There are almost two billion. It defies logic," the 51-year-old said. "When you have great athletes... you can actually use them as role models to have better athletes."