Thu, 22 Oct 2020

NAIROBI, Sept. 23 (Xinhua) -- After two seasons of injury frustrations, the 2014 Commonwealth Games 5,000m champion Mercy Cherono is now in better shape and ready for her long-awaited return to competition.

The 29-year-old, who finished fourth at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in the 5,000m event behind her compatriots - gold medalist Vivian Cheruiyot, Hellen Obiri and Ethiopian Almaz Ayana - has been entered to compete in the women's 1,500m event at the next week's World Athletics Continental Tour Gold series in Nairobi.

"After the Rio Olympics, I had a frightening foot fracture that made me miss out on the 2017 and 2018 seasons. I had to layback from competitions and I decided to start a family and in the process, I had a baby girl," Cherono told Xinhua on Wednesday.

With sports disrupted, travel restricted and meets and competitions delayed or canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic, Cherono decided to channel the frustrations of the forced shutdowns into more training and preparations for her comeback.

"I started training last year and I had hoped to compete fully this season but the virus shutdown happened. I used the virus frustration to train more and get into better shape. I can say I am 80 percent in-term of fitness and ready to compete during the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold series in Nairobi on Oct. 3," said Cherono.

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