Ennis-Hill out of European Cup Combined Events in Tallinn

Olympic heptathlon champion Jess Ennis-Hill withdraws from event as she continues to recover from ankle injury

Jessica Ennis (Mark Shearman)

The GB & NI team for the European Cup Combined Events Super League in Tallinn has been announced – minus Jess Ennis-Hill.

The Olympic heptathlon champion had been due to make her season debut at the event in Estonia and although she continues to recover from the ankle injury which forced her to withdraw from a women’s league match in Edinburgh at the beginning of the month and then the Oslo Diamond League meet, competing this weekend was not deemed worth the risk.

Confirming that her focus this season is the IAAF World Championships in Moscow in August, Ennis-Hill explained that doing a full heptathlon at this stage ‘is not the best option’.

“I have been running and putting some force through the ankle but Toni [Minichiello, coach] and I feel that doing a heptathlon is not the best option to achieving a full recovery, and day by day it is feeling much more free and comfortable,” she commented.

“This season’s focus has to still be the heptathlon in Moscow and there are many other options to compete before then.”

Coach Minichiello added: “Jessica does not need to do a heptathlon before Moscow – but it would have been useful.

“However, given her ankle is making slow but steady progress and things are looking much better we don’t feel it is worth rushing it to compete this weekend in all seven disciplines.

“My job is to get her to Moscow in one piece, and in good shape, and that is my priority.”

In Ennis-Hill’s absence the women’s team will be led by 2010 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Grace Clements and recently crowned England Athletics senior champion Jess Tappin.

Also selected are Jo Rowland, who set a heptathlon personal best of 5638 in May as she finished second at the Multistars IAAF Combined Events Challenge in Florence, and Ennis-Hill’s training partner Karla Drew, who improved her heptathlon personal best to 5389 in Bedford earlier this month.

Roger Skedd, who set a decathlon personal best of 7457 points in Australia in April, will lead the men’s team and will be joined by 2010 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Martin Brockman as well as England Athletics senior silver medallist Francis Baker and another of Minichiello’s charges John Lane.

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