Musagala still has work to do

Tough times. Musagala faces a race against time to be fit for World Championships. PHOTO | ISMAIL KEZAALA

What you need to know:

  • The 29-year-old had not run over the 1500m distance since limping off the track in round one of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in Japan last August.

After a dead end to 2021, Ronald Musagala knows he has quite a task on his feet and lungs to return to best shape in time for the Oregon World Athletics Championships due July.

On Saturday, he took another step closer to his recovery from a discomforting hamstring injury by running his first competitive 1500m race during the Fifth National Trials in Namboole.

He posted three minutes and 46.50 seconds in third place in Heat 3 won by his Uganda Wildlife Authority teammate and training partner Abu Mayanja.

“Ronald was a few weeks ago very sick. It’s clear that he is still not 100 per cent,” said his coach Addy Ruiter.

The 29-year-old had not run over the 1500m distance since limping off the track in round one of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in Japan last August.

Now with about 10 weeks left to the Oregon Worlds, Musagala could be working under pressure if he is to get his body to posting times close to his national record of 3:30.58 set in 2019.

Mayanja won in a time of 3:38.52 while Makerere’s Emmanuel Otim was second in 3:41.86.

Meanwhile, a group of teenagers missed hitting qualification marks to the World U20 Championships set for Cali, Colombia, from August 2-7.

While Scarlet Chebet easily dipped under the 5000m qualifying standard with 16:19:19 in second place behind Police’s Patricia Chekwemoi (16:12.77), Maureen Chebet of the Joshua Cheptegei Development Foundation (Jocdef) missed hitting the 800m standard to Cali.

Chebet won Heat 2 in 2:09.18 but it was still shy of the desired mark of 2:09.00. Similarly, Jocdef’s Brenda Chekwemoi won the 1500m race in 4:30.50 and Patience Cherop came second 4:31.02 – but they also fell short of the standard time of 4:29.00

“They are just beginning to run since last year but only a few times a week. All of them are only 15-16 years old and talented,” Ruiter added.

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