THE mere thought of contracting malaria or typhoid makes most people shudder. In sports, there have been several cases of athletes suddenly collapsing and dying after taking to the arena with these diseases.
Double Commonwealth Games gold medalist Moses Kipsiro is however one of those lucky sportsmen. For three months he unknowingly risked his life by training and competing for the world cross-country and IAAF Samsung Diamond League while suffering from malaria and typhoid.
He attributes his bad form on the international scene to his health battles. He finished seventh in the 5000 meters in Doha before a tenth position over the same distance in Rome.
In a chilling story, Kipsiro, who only discovered he had the ailments after blood tests in May, last week revealed how he thrice almost collapsed on track.
â€œI had a blinding headache, back and joint pain together with general weakness,â€ recounts the runner who in the process lost three kilograms. The visibly strained runner currently weighs 51kgs.
His troubles were worsened by an initial treatment he got in a Kenyan hospital in May. â€œIt was not effective. A follow up checkup I had early this month in Kapchorwa Referral Hospital revealed that I still had severe malaria and typhoid.â€
But despite his troubles, the 3000, 5000 and 10000m national record holder is confident he will be in shape for a podium finish in the forthcoming World Championship in Daegu, South Korea in August. He is currently training in his village in Bukwo in mount Elgon.
How Moses Kipsiro risked death