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Paula Radcliffe defiant on doping doubts and ready for London Marathon

The female marathon world record holder is pleased to be running again, albeit not at an elite level, and says doubts of her achievements are ‘horrible’
• Radcliffe set to end glorious career at London Marathon in April

“It’s horrible,” says Paula Radcliffe, Britain’s greatest marathon runner, staring you straight in the eye. “I get it all the time. People say: ‘She couldn’t have run 2:15 clean’ and I know I can be totally proud. I can’t understand how other people who have cheated can stand there and look their competitors and family in the eye.”

Radcliffe is talking passionately – as always – about how a spate of high-profile doping cases among distance runners has seeded an even greater amount of doubt and suspicion in the sport she loves. Cases such as Liliya Shobukhova, the second-fastest women’s marathon runner of all time behind Radcliffe, who was banned in 2014 because of irregularities with her blood passport. And cases such as Rita Jeptoo, the 2013 and 2014 Boston and Chicago marathon winner, who is one of around 40 Kenyan athletes who have been banned in the past two years.

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