Kampala-It was a painful sight watching Moses Kispiro competing in the Stockholm Diamond League on Thursday night.
Weeks after winning the 10,000m Commonwealth Games gold in Glasgow, Scotland, the Ugandan star tailed in the men’s 5,000m, coming home in 13:44.62.
Ethiopian Edris Muktar won the 12-and-a half-lap race in a world leading time of 12:54.83 with Kenyan Thomas Longosiwa finishing second in 12:56.16.
Commonwealth and African champion Caleb Ndiku of Kenya took third in 12:59.17. For Kipsiro, currently undergoing treatment under the supervision of Dr Gerard Hartmann of Ireland, this is a race he only entered on the physician’s orders.
“He (the doctor) told me I had to run so he can assess the progress of my recovery,” Kipsiro told Saturday Monitor of his surprise entry and performance in the race.
“Of course, it wasn’t my wish to run because I know I am well below my best but he told me he needed to observe the movement of my body.” For long, Kipsiro has been supporting his body only on the left side with the right virtually paralysed from toe to head. Until Glasgow, he had competed at several big championships on painkillers with an injured calf, knee and hamstring but on conviction of some doctors that everything would be fine.
As a result, his right side was ‘dead’, leaving the runner requiring a realignment of his body. “When he first tested me, he jokingly told me that I was like someone driving a car with a handbrake,” Kipsiro recollected.
“The right side of my body had started getting paralysed. At times I would feel a severe headache but never realised the injury was the cause,” he added. After his Commonwealth victory, Kipsiro returned to Kampala on August 7 but set off for Ireland three days later to be with his doctor.
The doctor, credited with resurrecting some of the world’s best long distance running talents, had ordered he travels straight from Glasgow to Ireland after the Games.
He never did but reported on March 10 and has since then been at Hartmann International Sports Injury Clinic, undergoing ‘the most painful experience of my career’.
The massage, injections and recovery exercises, have all brought tears out of Kipsiro’s eyes. “I have been injured before but nothing has come close to this.
Whenever I feel I am better, the doctor tells me something is wrong,” the 2010 double Commonwealth Games double gold medalist (5,000m/10,000m), said.
Under normal circumstances, any other top runner would have dropped out of the Thursday race after losing touch with the leading pack but Kipsiro held on and jogged his way to the finish line under the most painful of circumstances.
“I felt slight pain in the knee and decided to slow down,” Kipsiro revealed in a Facebook chat. “I wanted to stop running but remembered that the doctor was watching. I had to continue and I am glad I finished the race.”
Stockholm 5000m Results
1. Edris Muktar (Ethiopia) 12:54.83
2. Thomas Longosiwa (Kenya) 12:56.16
3. Caleb Ndiku (Kenya) 12:59.17
4. Galen Rupp (USA) 13:05.97
13. Moses Kipsiro (Uganda) 13:44.62