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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Illness leaves Sum grieving

Kenya’s Eunice Sum reacts during a past championship
Kenya’s Eunice Sum reacts during a past championship

Eunice Sum is devastated. Coiled in the settee inside her room at the Hilton Double Tree, she gazes into white walls of her hotel room, almost breaking into tears.

She pulled out of the World Championships with an ailment which she thought would heal, but has only escalated with the chilly weather here of the past two days.

“I was in one of my best shapes. I am only asking Kenyans to pray for me. It is devastating,” she told The Star yesterday. The news broke out on Wednesday night, much to the disbelief of the Kenyans here, some who argued she was misquoted.

Sum won gold in Moscow in 2013 and bronze in Beijing in 2015. Prodded to confirm that she was heading for the gold again, she just shakes her head, chuckles then says: “No problem. Another time will come.”

Team manager Nicholas Kipsang Maswayi put up an official release yesterday which confirmed the withdrawal. “The Kenya team management regrets to announce the withdrawal of Eunice Sum from the World Championships in London.

“Sum, who won world 800m gold in 2013 and bronze in 2015, has not been feeling well since arriving here on August 6. The cold weather experienced here in the past two days has only made her case worse.

“A decision has been made by Team Kenya in consultation with the athlete, Team Kenya Medical, IAAF and the LOC Medical for her to withdraw from the event on medical grounds. A formal withdrawal has been submitted to the IAAF.

“Sum is undergoing requisite medical attention as per standard procedure in the United Kingdom,” said the statement.

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