Welsh triathlon star Helen Jenkins to make comeback in Cape Town

By Aly RowellBBC Wales Sport
Helen Jenkins
Helen Jenkins was crowned world champion in 2008 and 2011

Double world triathlon champion Helen Jenkins will make her competitive return from injury in the latest leg of the International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Series in Cape Town on Saturday.

Jenkins, 31, has not competed since July 2014.

She tore the plantar fascia (arch) of her foot, forcing her to miss the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

'I've got a mixture of excitement and nerves ahead of my return," said Jenkins.

"I haven't really got any expectations but my swimming and bike training has been going really well in recent months.

"I feel I'm a better athlete in these two disciplines than I was last year, but I haven't been able to do as much running as I would have liked."

Jenkins missed the whole of 2013 with the knee injury that she picked up prior to the London 2012 Olympics.

Wales' proud triathlon record
Helen Jenkins is one of three Welsh women to win the world triathlon title. Leanda Cave claimed the title in 2002 and Non Stanford took the title at the first attempt in 2013.

Great Britain team selection for next summer's Rio Games is set for August and September this year.

The athletes need to make the podium at both the Rio test event and the World Series final in Chicago the following month.

British competitors will therefore place emphasis on performances later in the season.

Jenkins sees the Cape Town event as the "first step back" after a frustrating three years.

"It's been a long time since I've been injury free. It's not been easy. There have been tears, emotion, there's been everything," she said.

"There have been times in the last six months where I've thought 'do I want to keep doing this?' It's so hard because you put everything into it but I feel like my body is holding me back.

"I have an overwhelming desire though to go to another Olympics and I believe that if I can train consistently and keep my body injury-free then I can be one of the medallists in Rio.

"That belief keeps me going."