Sally Pearson, the 2012 Olympic 100m hurdles champion, has retired, citing recent injuries limiting her from contending for more gold medals.
“When you count six injuries this year that no one knows about, and another whole year to go of training for the Olympics to try and win gold, I have major doubts that my body will make it,” Pearson said on Australia’s Seven Network.
Pearson, 32, mentioned separate quad, calf and hamstring tears in 2019, plus a knee injection to allow her to hurdle and a recurrence of an Achilles injury that kept her out of the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
“Every day I think about the injuries that I might get in a week’s time or the next time I step back on the track,” she said. “If you can guarantee me another year with no injuries, I’d be gladly, happy to do it. No one can guarantee me that.”
Pearson said two weeks ago that she hoped to return in late August and to defend her world title in Doha in October, according to Australian media.
She also broke a wrist in a race fall in 2015 and tore a hamstring in 2016, preventing her from defending her Olympic title in Rio.
Despite all that, Pearson earned her second world title in 2017, six years after she took her maiden crown in a personal-best 12.28 seconds. She last raced on the top-level Diamond League in 2017, but had competed in lower-level meets as recently as June 14.
Pearson retires as the sixth-fastest woman in history. She is Australia’s lone female Olympic track and field champion since Cathy Freeman won the 400m at Sydney 2000.
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