National 400m record holder Hellen Syombua has declared herself fit for the World Championships set for September 27 to October 6 in Doha, Qatar.
Syombua said a left thigh injury sustained during the Kenya Police Service Athletics Championships on July 12 this year, has healed and she is ready for the national trials for the World Championships starting ton Thursday at the Nyayo National Stadium.
The 22-year-old had won the national trials for the African Games in a National Record breaking feat of 51.09 seconds on June 22 to re-confirm her place at the World event but would pull a hamstring in 200m at the Police event.
That saw her fail to recover fully for the National Championships and later the African Games in Rabat, Morocco where she finished seventh in 58.83 in the heats on August 30.
“Doctors had given me four weeks to resume training after the injury. I really didn’t want to push hard in Rabat but all that pain is gone,” said Syombua after going through the morning drills at Nyayo National Stadium under coach Ian Dexter from Scotland.
“The training has been intense since we arrived from Rabat and there is no pain at all in the muscles…I am gliding with ease and can’t wait for the trials and the World Championships,” said Syombua. “I have already qualified for the Doha event but I want to tell Kenyans that I am ready with a good show at the trials.”
Syombua, the 2019 World Relay mixed race bronze medallist, is the only female athlete apart from the Africa Under-20 400m champion Mary Moraa to have attained the qualifying time of 51.80 for the World Championships.
Syombua is also set to double in the mixed relay event at the World Championships by virtue of Team Kenya having claimed bronze during the World Relay Championships on May 12 in Yokohama, Japan.
Syombua hit the qualifying time for the World Championships for the first time during the national trials for the World Relay when she clocked 51.72 to win the 400m final.
Moraa, 19, hit the qualifying when she dashed to second place in 51.75 in the semi-finals during the African Games on August 27. Moraa, the 2017 World Under-18 400m silver medallist, would then settle fourth in the final in 51.97 the following day.
“I was so elated and excited for Moraa since I won’t be alone in the women’s 400m battle,” said Syombua. “I am glad she only needed the semi-final to hit the tome for Doha.”
Syombua said the country should have qualified more sprinters for the World Championships.
Kenya will be represented by four sprinters in the individual events and besides Syombua and Moraa, others are National 400m champion Alphas Kishoyian (45.30) in 400m and Nicholas Kiprotich Chirchir (49.40) in 400m hurdles.