alexa Sum fires warning shot to Semenya in women’s 800m - Daily Nation

Sum fires warning shot to Semenya in women’s 800m

Sunday July 31 2016

World, African and Commonwealth Games champion Eunice Sum sprints during the final of the 800 m race of the Kenyan qualifiers for the World Championships, in Nairobi on August 1, 2015. She has fired a warning shot to South Africa's Caster Semenya in women’s 800m during Rio Games. PHOTO | TONY KARUMBA | AFP

World, African and Commonwealth Games champion Eunice Sum sprints during the final of the 800 m race of the Kenyan qualifiers for the World Championships, in Nairobi on August 1, 2015. She has fired a warning shot to South Africa's Caster Semenya in women’s 800m during Rio Games. PHOTO | TONY KARUMBA | AFP 

BENARD ROTICH
By BENARD ROTICH
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Former world 800 metres champion Eunice Sum says she is not over the hill yet, despite all the talk being of an “automatic” gold for South Africa’s Caster Semenya.

Sum says her training programme has been going on well and her confidence levels are rising as Rio approaches.

“My training so far has been going on well and I’m confident that I will do well. My goal is to get to the final and after that go for victory,” said Sum.

According to Sum, the 800m race is normally tricky and running as a team will not help since it’s a short race compared with long distance races. In her opinion, team tactics have no place in races 800m and below.

“Our race is very tricky and running as one team is hard but our prayer is for us to get to the finals and go for the medals,” said Sum.The athlete who normally trains in Eldoret, said that she wants to run her season’s best after running 1:57.47 in the IAAF Diamond League’s Monaco leg.

“I want to run my season’s best this time as I set my eyes on a gold medal which I don’t have in my cabinet. I don’t want to talk about my competitors but what I can say is I’ll run a good race,” she said. Sum was third after Semenya and Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba at the 2015 World Championships final in Beijing.

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LEADS DIAMOND RACES

Semenya currently leads the Diamond races with 40 points after winning four races followed by Niyonsaba who has 28 points. In 2010, Sum participated in the African Championships held in Nairobi and managed a ninth position before trying her luck at the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea in 2011, where she only got to the semi-finals.

During the Africa Championships in 2102 in Porto Novo, Benin, Sum got a silver medal and made the London Olympics. But she ran the 1,500m and failed to impress for what she says was lack of experience that made her not to qualify to the finals.

“I got chance to represent Kenya in the 1,500m race but I did not qualify for the finals because I didn’t have enough experience. At least now I have participated in the 800m race for three years and I know what to do,” said the athlete.

She won the 2013 World Championships gold in Moscow before going for other two gold medals at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and the Africa Championships in Marrakech, Morocco.

She is teaming up in Rio with Winny Chebet and former World Junior champion Margaret Nyairera.

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