Kenya's runner Longosiwa keen to compete at World Cross
Kenya's runner Longosiwa keen to compete at World Cross

IANS

Nairobi, Jan 12: A groin injury and stiff competition in the team camp denied former Olympic 5,000 metres bronze medallist Thomas Longosiwa a chance to travel to Rio Olympics in August.

But he has since overcome his problems and is keen to push for a slot in the Kenya team for both the World Cross Country Championships in Kampala in March and the London World Athletics Championships in August, reports Xinhua.

"I hope my fitness is good enough to secure me a slot in the Kenya team to the World Cross Country event in Kampala. I competed in Spanish cross country last November to test myself and I was satisfied with it though I never won the event," he said.

"For me, it has been hard competing in cross-country due to a groin injury I picked but over time, I seem to have overcome it. I want to start the season with the quest for the world x-country," said Longosiwa.

But Longosiwa is yet to come to terms with the decision by the coaches to omit him from the Rio Olympics, where he was part of the Kenya team in the 5,000m race.

"It is hard to take. I shelved all other plans and made time to join the team camp and train hard for Rio only to be left behind. I was so disappointed but I have since put all that behind me and hopefully this time round as I start preparations for Kampala and London, it will go well for me," added Longosiwa.

But the 30-year-old will accept the verdict should he fail to make the team to the World Cross Country because he is struggling to regain his fitness ahead of the Kenyan trials in February.

"It may be too soon and I will listen to my body. But missing the world cross is not a big deal, as I intend to dominate the track competition at the Diamond League and the World Championships," he said.

"I want to start the season with the quest for the World Cross Country but it is the London world championships that I cherish much and will like to win gold there."

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Update: 12-January-2017

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