News18»Sports
1-MIN READ

Bekele Pulls Out Of London Marathon With Calf Injury

CORRECTS NAME OF ATHLETE   Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele trains within the grounds of the official hotel and biosecure bubble in London, Wednesday Sept. 30, 2020, ahead of the elite-only 2020 London Marathon on Sunday Oct. 4. The 40th Race will take place on a closed-loop circuit around St James's Park in central London. (Bob Martin/London Marathon Events via AP)

CORRECTS NAME OF ATHLETE Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele trains within the grounds of the official hotel and biosecure bubble in London, Wednesday Sept. 30, 2020, ahead of the elite-only 2020 London Marathon on Sunday Oct. 4. The 40th Race will take place on a closed-loop circuit around St James's Park in central London. (Bob Martin/London Marathon Events via AP)

Ethiopian runner Kenenisa Bekele withdrew from the London Marathon on Friday because of a left calf injury.

LONDON: Ethiopian runner Kenenisa Bekele withdrew from the London Marathon on Friday because of a left calf injury.

Marathon officials had billed Sunday’s race as a showdown between Bekele and longtime rival Eliud Kipchoge, the world-record holder.

The 38-year-old Bekele, a three-time Olympic champion on the track, said in a video message that he felt pain in his calf two weeks ago. He had hoped to get through it, but said Friday that he can’t.

Its really impossible to race on Sunday. I am not ready because of not solving this minor issue, Bekele said. I have tried my best to solve it.

Bekele said he initially felt pain when he pushed a little bit hard in training.” He said he’s disappointed for my fans and vowed to return next year.

Kipchoge set the world record (2 hours, 1 minute, 39 seconds) in Berlin in 2018. A year later, Bekele won the same race and was just two seconds off Kipchoges mark.

Athletes will compete on a 26.2-mile (42.2-kilometer) closed-loop course consisting of 19.6 clockwise laps around St. James Park. The traditional course along the River Thames was scrapped because of the coronavirus pandemic. Only elite men and women are competing and no spectators are permitted.

The 35-year-old Kipchoge, who is from Kenya, is seeking his fifth London victory.

Only one other World Marathon Major Tokyo was held this year. Boston, Berlin, Chicago and New York were all canceled because of the pandemic. The Tokyo field was also elite runners only.

___

More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports


Next Story
Loading...