Jessica Ennis-Hill out for 15 weeks to save career

 

Olympic heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis-Hill is expected to be out of action for around 15 weeks, after her coach, Toni Minichiello, revealed that her career would have been at risk had she not pulled out of the upcoming World Championships.

The 27-year-old has been struggling with Achilles and heel problems throughout the summer and though she managed to compete in the Anniversary Games in London last weekend she was some way below her best. This seemed to have prompted her decision to pull out of Britain's squad for Moscow.

However, Minichiello has now admitted the full reason behind that decision: that if she had competed it could have threatened her future career.

"When she didn't respond well after [the Anniversary Games], the position was that it didn't make sense and you're probably going to cause her more damage and lose the remaining years of her career to struggling with the injury," he said. "As a coach I'm not prepared to take that kind of risk so decisions are made and we pulled her at that stage.

"Achilles tendons are awkward and there's a period of rest [involved]. If we're lucky then we're looking at a 12 to 15-week recuperation period."

In only her second competitive appearance since London 2012, Ennis-Hill finished fourth in the 100m hurdles and eighth out of eight in the long jump at the Anniversary Games at the Olympic Stadium.

She did break her personal best in the javelin at a low-key meeting at Loughborough two weeks ago but afterwards admitted, ominously, that her injury was still playing up. "It's pain. It's one little bit that's really painful," she said. "When I compress it and when I'm pushing off it, it hurts."

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