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Kenyan Betsy Saina now targets Manchester 10km road race   

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenyan Paris Marathon champion Betsy Saina will return to action just one month after her victory in the French capital when she competes in the Manchester 10km road race on May 18.

Saina broke her road-racing jinx when she won the Paris Marathon last month, clocking a time of 2:22:56.  “I did my first marathon in Tokyo and I didn’t finish it. Just like in New York. Paris was my third attempt and I proved it was my distance and I’m really glad I won. It’s a pleasure,” Saina said on Friday from Eldoret.

She has since been locked down as she recovers from the daunting distance and hopes she will emerge stronger as she starts her training to compete in Manchester. “My marathon legs are finally quick again. I feel they are the fastest they’ve been since 2016. The recovery went well and I am excited to have my wheels back before my 10km race in Manchester next weekend,” she added.

Saina, who has not ruled out competing at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020, wants to build a strong marathon resume and let her performance influence her selection for the Kenyan national team.

However, there will be tough competition with several other runners keen to secure the three available slots. The 2019 World Championships in Qatar may come too soon for Saina, but she will gladly take up the challenge should she be invited to join the Kenyan national team.

“I did my first training on May 1... since my breakthrough in the marathon. I am excited to get back and put in the hard work. The fruits of success are so sweet. My heart, when I won in Paris, felt like a million years had been added to my life. I need more wins,” she said. 

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