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January 17, 2019

Sum focused

Eunice Jepkoech Sum in previopus IAAF Diamond League meeting. /COURTESY
Eunice Jepkoech Sum in previopus IAAF Diamond League meeting. /COURTESY

 Former 800m champion Eunice Sum will start her preparations for the IAAF World Championships in August at the Doha Diamond League in May.

Sum said she is more settled this time round compared to last year and hopes the season will be good. Sum who won Kenya a gold medal at the 2013 IAAF World Championships in Moscow, blamed her dismal performance last season to disruptions caused by the doping allegations against her manager, Federico Rosa, who has since been set free.

“I have been training all along since last year after the Rio Olympics and I am really focused this season. Last year, you know what happened and that really affected me in terms of training,” she said.

“I tried my best physically but psychologically I was down hence the poor performance. But this time my season is already in motion and I am focused on the World athletics Championships in London,” Sum added.

Sum, who his also the 2014 Commonwealth Games 800m gold medalist will use the Diamond League season as a build-up towards London. She will race in Doha, Qatar on May 13th before heading to Eugene in United States of America on May 27 and Oslo in June.

“For now, those are the meetings I intend to compete but after that I will see whether I can feature in any other,” she noted. Sum, who crushed out of the Rio Olympics in semi-finals, lost her title at the 2015 Beijing Championships, where she got a bronze medal.

“I want to improve my training up from last season and I am specifically working on my speed. I believe I will make it but I don’t want to say I will reclaim my title although anything can happen,” she explained.

Sum used to compete in heptathlon while in school before she was spotted by former world 800m queen Janeth Jepkosgei, who encouraged her to shift to the two-lap race.

She first made her international appearance at the 2010 Africa Championships in Nairobi but failed to make it past the heats. She made her maiden appearance at the World Championships in Daegu the following year but once again bowed out in semis.

Her silver medal at the 2012 African Championships motivated her and she was in the Kenyan line-up for London Olympics the same year. In 2013 she made her biggest breakthrough, winning gold at the 2013 World Championships in Moscow.

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