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Zim runner Mabika out to defend throne

Mabika is returning from a four-month injury lay-off that saw him miss a number of races.

UNITED Arab Emirates-based middle distance runner Royal Mabika will be out to defend his throne when he makes a return to the track at the City Half Marathon at the Yas Island resort  in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

Mabika is returning from a four-month injury lay-off that saw him miss a number of races.

But he has recovered just in time to defend the 10km race he won last year.

He clocked an impressive time of 30:26 minutes to scoop gold the last time out.

Mabika said he has fully recovered and is looking forward to the race.

"l have been out of the running game for 4 months now, but l will be returning to the road this Sunday at the City Half Marathon at Yas lsland," Mabika confirmed.

"I have been training for the past months without racing, l believe I am in the best shape for the race. The injury was a bit tough on me because here in Abu Dhabi I am one of the popular African runners so it pegged me back, but I am happy to be coming back on the road this weekend."

After missing a chance to qualify for major events internationally largely due to the injury, Mabika is targeting to compete at the Turkey marathon later this year.

The athlete who has made a huge name in the Middle East through athletics says he has also ventured into other businesses.

"I am now in the sporting business managing an events company here, l laid that foundation through running so I'm optimistic about the future."

Last year's race at Yas Island attracted over 2 000 top athletes, and more are expected to feature at the weekend.


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