Swimmer Ikee has been discharged from a 10-month hospitalization due to leukemia
December 18, 2019 Wednesday
Photo: REUTERS file
TOKYO – Japanese swimmer Rikako Ikee, who was diagnosed with leukemia earlier this year, and was released from the hospital on Tuesday and is aiming to take part in the medal at the Paris 2024 Olympics. She will not be participating in the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Ikee entered the world of Asian Games last year at the age of 18, winning a record of six gold medals in swimming and set the record for the year’s fastest time in the world at the 100 meters butterfly.
It is a big medal hope for Japan, the host of the upcoming Tokyo Olympics 2020, but Ikee was diagnosed with leukemia this year in February (2019).
“Finally, I get out of hospital,” she wrote on Twitter. “There were times when I felt strong nausea from the medication, but I kept telling myself ‘it’s OK, it will end at some point. It has been hard, long days but I have lots of encouragement and now want to go back to my life.”
Ikee, whose gold medal was the most for a female athlete in a single Asian Games, also picked up two relay silvers to match in North Korean shooter So Gin Man’s record tally of eight medals.
Ikee said she is still waiting for approval from her doctor to start swimming training again, but she is doing basic training already.
“I will aim for Paris 2024 and I will work hard to get medals there,” the 19-year-old wrote.
Ikee holds Japanese national records over 50, 100 and 200 meters in freestyle, as well as 50 and 100 meters in butterfly and was named Japanese Swimmer of the Year in 2018.
News source: Japan Today
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