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UK Athletics

UKA ends Davies’ two years of agony

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Chris Davies
Chris Davies

International endurance runner Chris Davies (Telford AC) has thanked UK Athletics for solving the problem of why he has finished every run in agony for the past two years.


A scan arranged by the national governing body revealed that he has run in European Cup, World Cross Country Championships and Commonwealth Games with, in effect, two broken legs.


“It was quite a surprise to me,” said Davies, a 29-year-old postman, who thought his pains were coming from calf muscles but has now been ordered to keep his feet up for six weeks while stress fractures in both shins begin to heal.


“I’ve had calf problems for almost two years. My training has been patchy. I tore a calf muscle after last year’s European Cup and had six weeks off. Then I got ready for the Commonwealth Games but needed physio after every run.”


Disappointed as he was with his 12th place in the Games 5000m, he immediately flew to Japan and struggled home 105th in the 4km race at the World Cross Country Championships.


Knowing that neither run reflected the quality of the former Welsh cross country and 5000m champion, UK Athletics named Davies as one of seven athletes to receive extra funding to support achievement in non-lottery funded endurance competition including the World Cross Country Championships and European Cross Country Championships


As part of the deal, Davies was given a full medical examination. Because of the long-term nature of his calf pains, he was sent for an MRI scan – and told: “You have stress fractures in both tibias!”


Davies said: “I’m quite lucky. I went onto team contracts three months ago and this enabled me to get medical support. I’ve only ever been 75 per cent fit.


“Now I have this diagnosis, I have six weeks of not putting any weight on while staying off my feet. I’m going to do some aqua jogging and aim to be back running just before Christmas in the hope I can make the Worlds in Kenya. It’s a relief to know the medical people have found exactly what’s wrong.”


UKA Senior Co-ordinator for Endurance Spencer Barden said: “It is a shame about the injury, but a least it is in hand and hopefully Chris will be back running soon.”