Olympic marathon champion Mizuki Noguchi will run in next month’s Sapporo International Half Marathon, marking her first appearance in a competitive road race since her victory in Athens last summer, organizers said Friday.

Catherine Ndereba of Kenya, runnerup to Noguchi at the Athens Games, is also on the list of invitees to the July 3 race in Sapporo along with Naoko Sakamoto, who finished seventh in Athens. Among others in the women’s field are Harumi Hiroyama and Megumi Oshima as they warm up for the marathon race at the world athletics championships to be held in Helsinki in August.

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