Cheruiyot shakes off tendon injury, targets London win, Tokyo Games

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NAIROBI, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- Olympic champion Vivian Cheruiyot said in Eldoret on Tuesday that she has overcome a stubborn tendon injury and will be ready to battle for the London marathon title in April.

Cheruiyot, 36, passed on the chance to compete at the Berlin marathon last September to focus on recovery after her tendon flared up in training.

Ready for what will be her sixth marathon and third in London, Cheruiyot pinned her hopes on using the race as a springboard to force her way into the Kenya team for the Tokyo Olympics.

"London holds very happy memories for me and I can't wait to come back," she said, adding that she is planning to run a shorter race in the build-up to the London marathon.

However, the diminutive runner will be up against a staller list of elite runners including defending champion and world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei (2:14.04), who is yet to lose a race since October 2018.

There is also three-time Berlin marathon winner Gladys Cherono, Valencia marathon champion Roza Dereje of Ethiopia, the current world champion Ruth Chepngetich and reigning New York marathon champion Joyciline Jepkosgei.

"It is my prayer that I win in London because it will see me secure a ticket to Tokyo Olympics for the Kenya team. This is my year and I have that never give up fighting spirit. I always plan and run my own race irrespective of who I am up against," said Cheruiyot.

Kenya is due to name its provisional marathon team at the end of January.

Each country is eligible to register three athletes for the Olympic marathon, and with the country having over 100 elite runners who have run faster than the 2:30.00 qualification mark, Kenya will face a stiff challenge to decide its squad. Enditem

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