TRURO runner Annabel Gummow has been forced to admit defeat in her attempt to take part in the World Junior Championships.
The junior international has decided to end her season early after a second knee injury – one on each knee – cruelly ended her dream of taking on the world's elite over 5000m in the under 20 age group in Barcelona next month.
Understandably too upset to talk herself it was left to mother Sarah to express her daughter's deep disappointment with how the season has turned out.
"Annabel is totally gutted," said Mrs Gummow.
The latest knee problem flared up at the British Milers' Club Grand Prix in Watford earlier this month and forced Gummow to drop out of the 5000m as she sought to run the qualifying standard. She had already missed the official UK Athletics trial in Manchester the previous month with a problem on the other knee caused in a freak accident after she tripped and fell while on a training run near her Truro home.
But after an outstanding winter the Great Britain selectors were prepared to give her plenty of time to recover and prove her fitness. But the second injury meant she first missed the England Under 20 Championships and then finally the Olympic trials in Birmingham last weekend.
"Annabel has decided to cut her season short and take time off to get the knee injury sorted and make sure she is ready for the winter season," added Mrs Gummow.
It means that Gummow, who last season finished third in the 5000m at the European Junior Championships, has not raced on the track at all this summer. But with medical support being provided by UK Athletics it should only be a matter of time before Gummow is able to resume training again and while missing out on the World Juniors is a short term blow it is her long term development that is of paramount importance.