KATHRYN Mitchell’s rich vein of form ahead of this week’s Australian Athletic Championships will count for nothing, with the star javelin thrower pulling out of the qualifying rounds with a shoulder injury.
Mitchell injured her shoulder in a throwing session late last week and scans on Tuesday confirmed she had strained a shoulder muscle to the extent it was starting to tear away from the bone.
The Ballarat athlete was scheduled to contest today’s qualifying rounds, which starts at 9am, but is now expected to miss four to six weeks of training as she rehabilitates the injury.
“I’m not exactly sure how it occurred, at first I thought it was just muscle soreness,” Mitchell said.
“From what we’ve (Mitchell and her support team) gathered it doesn’t look too serious but it’s not worth the risk to go out there and throw and potentially jeopardise the rest of the season.
“It’s sort of a tricky one – I really did want to challenge for the national title and I’m still a bit frustrated because I’m in the best shape that I’ve ever been in.”
Prior to the championships the 31-year-old had thrown several impressive distances, including a personal best of 66.10 metres at the Adelaide Track Classic in February.
Mitchell still believes that she is on target to contest for a spot in the Australian team at this year’s Commonwealth Games held in Glasgow.
“The focus for me is on Glasgow and there are a few Diamond League events in the weeks leading up to it that I hope I will be able to throw in,” she said.
“I’ve really got to rest the shoulder in these first two weeks and make sure I have a slow, careful build up to full fitness.”