Four-time shot put world champion and reigning Olympic gold medallist Valerie Adams pulled out of the 2015 World Athletics Championships on Wednesday.
Adams revealed on Instagram that she has yet to fully recover from surgery to her right elbow, which was operated on in September 2014, while the 30-year-old New Zealander is also struggling with a knee problem.
It means there will be a new women’s shot put world champion for the first time since 2005, when Adams won silver behind Russia’s Olga Ryabinkina.
“This has been a tough comeback but I’m glad I made an attempt this season as it has just boosted my motivation more for the Olympics which has always been the main focus,” Adams wrote.
“Deep down this is not easy but I’m a realist and know I’m not ready just yet and I still have stuff to work and it’s been a challenge since my surgery on my elbow especially as it has/is taking more time then [sic] I thought it would… But that’s life and I must roll with the punches and deal to this sucker.
“My right knee also needs some tender loving physical care and that will be attended to as soon as I hit NZ soil.”
Adams has won the past two Olympic titles in the women’s shot put.
The 2015 World Athletics Championships start in Beijing on August 22.