• Kyodo


Sydney Olympic marathon champion Naoko Takahashi ran a half-marathon race in Chiba on Sunday in a comeback bid from an ankle injury.

Takahashi completed the course in 1 hour, 26 minutes, 16 seconds in her first race over 20 km since fracturing her right ankle while training in Colorado last September.

Her best in a half-marathon is 1:08:55, but for Takahashi the race in which she jogged the entire way was a success.

“I was aiming for about 1:30:00. The best thing is that I completed the race and I didn’t have any pain (in my ankle),” Takahashi said.

It was Takahashi’s first appearance in a competitive race since she finished second in the Tokyo International Women’s Marathon in November 2003 — the result that eventually cost her a place in last summer’s Athens Olympics.

The 32-year-old is hoping to make a full-fledged comeback to marathon as soon as possible and will begin a one-month training camp Tuesday on Tokunoshima Island in Kagoshima Prefecture.

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