Kenya’s World 1,500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot eyes return at Diamond League

FILE PHOTO: Kenya’s Timothy Cheruiyot poses on the podium during the medal ceremony for the Men’s 1500m at the 2019 IAAF Athletics World Championships at the Khalifa International stadium in Doha. (Photo by MUSTAFA ABUMUNES / AFP)

With the athletics season set to resume in August, Kenya’s Timothy Cheruiyot returned to training following months of disruption due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The World 1,500m champion told Reuters that he plans to return to competitive running next month. Cheruiyot and other teammates were forced to break their training camp in Rongai in Kenya’s Nakuru County.

The athletics season is expected to restart next month with the Monaco Diamond League kicking off the calendar on August 14.

“My focus is to be there and compete to run, at least, my personal best,” Cheruiyot said.

While Cheruiyot, like several other athletes were left frustrated by the disruptions, he noted that there have been some positives to take away from his time out from the track.

Kenyan athletes have previously said that they had lost unknown amounts of income in the form of prize money and allowances with the cancellation of several events.

Cheruiyot said that he was able to spend time with his family and even recover from an unspecified injury he had suffered.

With international flights in Kenya also to return at the start of next month, Cheruiyot, and other athletes, hope that they will be able to travel and compete as part of their preparations for next year’s Olympic Games.

Rongai Athletics Club coach Ben Ouma said earlier this month that all athletes going to Monaco must be tested for COVID-19 at least 72 hours before travelling and must be issued with COVID-19 clearance certificates.

The Kenyan government has opened negotiations with countries in the European Union to allow Kenyan athletes to compete in the Diamond League series in Europe when international flights resume.

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