ISLAND-born athlete Kelly Sotherton has today announced her early retirement from the sport following a prolapsed disc.

Sotherton, who was born in Newport, shot to fame after winning bronze at the Athens Olympics back in 2004.

Unfortunately, the 35-year-old runner suffered a major injury while competing at the IAAF Combined Events Challenge event in Italy this month, putting her out of action.  Kelly underwent an operation to remove a section of prolapsed disc from her back, however will not be back on her feet before the London 2012 Olympic selection deadline.

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In a statement today, Sotherton said: “I’m so proud to have represented my country and to have won an Olympic medal, among other accolades, and am grateful to all the support I have received over the years from those around me. I’d particularly like to thank my coach of 8 years, Aston Moore, who has stuck by me through thick and thin.

“It’s a really exciting time for sport in this country so I’m looking forward to enjoying it over the next few months.”


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