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Pearson out of Nitro athletics series

AAP logoAAP 1/12/2016 Melissa Woods

Usain Bolt's Nitro Athletics series will be missing Australian drawcard Sally Pearson, who is planning to race overseas as she continues her comeback from injury.

The 2012 Olympic hurdles champion was tipped to lead the Australian squad against the Bolt All-Stars, headlined by the legendary Jamaican sprinter.

However, in a major blow, Pearson has told organisers she is unavailable for the three February meets because of a scheduling issue.

The 30-year-old, unable to defend her Olympic crown in Rio due to hamstring and Achilles injuries, is planning on racing indoors in Europe which she feels will be of greater benefit than the new teams-based event in Melbourne.

"For me it's important to get overseas and really focus on my starts and my first five to six hurdles," said Pearson, who is now self-coached, having parted ways in August with Ash Mahoney.

"That's always been the best part of my race and I feel like in the last season or two with my injuries I've lost a little bit of that and so now I'm trying to get that back and trying to again be the best hurdler in the world," she told the Nine Network.

Bolt, a nine-time Olympic champion, will captain his All-Stars in the competition, which features six teams of 12 men and 12 women competing across mostly non-traditional events including a three-minute run and medley and hurdles relays.

A provisional squad of 40 will be named on Friday for the Australian team.

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