World men 1500 meters champion, Elijah Manangoi, has withdrawn from the Doha 2019 IAAF World Championships on Tuesday due to an injury he picked in training.
The African and Commonwealth champion confirmed he will not recover in time for the event that kicks off on September 27 in Qatar having injured his ankle when training at his Rongai Athletics Club in Nairobi.
The London 2017 winner confirmed his withdrawal in a statement saying he would now focus on getting fit for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
“It will take between four and eight weeks to recover from the doctor’s final results. It’s sad I will not defend my title in Doha.
“I had no choice; we have to save the carrier for the sake of Olympic Year. It’s not my fault. But God knows the reason why,” the London 2017 world champion wrote in a statement on social media.
“All the best to my teammates, world silver medallist Timothy Cheruiyot, my younger brother; world junior champion George Manangoi and Ronald Kwemoi bring it back home guys. To all competitors and event organisers, make Doha a fun-filled and successful event. See you next season. ” the Gold Coast 2018 title winner added.
The Beijing 2015 Worlds silver winner ran three minutes, 33.61 seconds to win his first world title in London.
Younger brother Manangoi, Diamond League winner, Cheruiyot and Kwemoi will now represent Kenya at the distance.
Speaking last weekend, the stricken champion had expressed optimism he would recover in good time for his title defense.
“I’m so impressed with my kid brother, George because he is really coming up, you know, from youth, junior and senior now.
“And we are not only two we are now four brothers so we have also younger brothers who are coming up, young and promising, so I am really happy about them,” he said after watching his younger brother make the Kenya team at the Doha 2019 Trials last Friday.
The world champion did not run since he had a wildcard to Doha as he continued recovery having missed most of the season injured. He made his comeback last month.