Tuesday, 16 August 2016
Reigning Olympic women’s pole vault champion Jenn Suhr of the United States is battling for fitness after being struck down by illness ahead of her title defence, her husband said Monday.
In a posting on Facebook, Rick Suhr said the 34-year-old 2012 gold medallist had been laid low by a virus which was threatening to derail her bid for back-to-back pole vault crowns.
“Jenn has fallen ill, quite ill in the last two days,” Rick Suhr said.
“This morning it has really kicked in, she has lost her voice almost completely. Seems she picked up a nasty virus here and has caused respiratory complications.”
Suhr is widely seen as the front-runner for the women’s competition, which begins Tuesday, particularly in the absence of two-time Olympic champion Yelena Isinbayeva, who has fallen foul of the blanket ban imposed on Russian athletes.
“This sucks, and I mean really sucks! Seems so unfair, we came here in the greatest shape of our life,” Rick Suhr said.
“Four years of total dedication eaten up in one nasty virus that is only getting worse.
“We have to compete tomorrow and have both decided not to withdraw. Hoping the antibiotics and other meds given by our doctors help. But this does not look good.
“We will fight the good fight. God has blessed us with Olympic gold and silver in the past. So I can’t be angry. I am just so disappointed.”
Source by: AFP