Steph Twell suffers ankle fracture

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Updated: February 18, 2011

Britain’s Commonwealth 1,500m bronze medalist Steph Twell could be out of action for some time after fracturing her ankle at a cross-country race in Belgium.

Twell looked set for victory on the final lap of the race in Hannut when she slipped and fell, allowing fellow Briton Gemma Steel to take the spoils.

The Scot, 21, was taken to hospital and the injury is now in plaster.

Her coach Mick Woods told BBC Sport: “There’s no timeframe for recovery, but I can’t imagine it will heal quickly.”

It was also revealed that contrary to earlier reports, Twell did not suffer an open fracture.

She returned to Britain on Monday and will see UK Athletics medics for further scans to confirm the extent of her injury.

Woods continued: “And we don’t know if there any complications. It will need serious investigation. She’s very down and very depressed.”

Frank Dick, chairman of Scottish Athletics said: “This is a tough one for anyone let alone an athlete fighting her way towards the Olympic arena.

“But Steph has a special character, courage and persistence. She also has the wisdom of a truly outstanding coach to guide her back on track.

“They have climbed big mountains before and will get to the top of this one.”

Twell had been using the race as preparation for the World Cross Country Championships, beginning on 20 March in Punta Umbria, Spain.

“She knew the course was difficult,” admitted Woods. “She was miles ahead of the other runners and had only 600m to go.

“She heard the ankle break and got to try and run, but went straight to ground.

“It’s so unfortunate. She has just returned from a three-and-a-half-week altitude training camp in Kenya and won a race last weekend in Spain.

“No bone was exposed, contrary to other reports. There are no issues with the fibula, but there is some issue with the ankle bone. She will have an MRI scan on Monday.”

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