Ennis will fight to retain world crown

In top shape: Jessica Ennis has had a good indoor season so far
In top shape: Jessica Ennis has had a good indoor season so far
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JESSICA Ennis says she’s ready for the toughest fight of her life to retain her indoor pentathlon world title in Istanbul tomorrow.

The 26-year-old from Sheffield is hoping to show she’s back to her best after losing her outdoor crown to Russian Tatyana Chernova last September in South Korea.

“It’ll be the toughest indoor championships I have been involved in,” she said.

“The standard will be really high - higher then any other year because of the Olympics. People pull out those extra performances.”

Better known for taking part in the seven event heptathlon over two days, Ennis rates the one-day five discipline pentathlon as a more physically and mentally daunting prospect.

She said: “I think I prefer doing the heptathlon because it’s broken up a bit more.

“You have two sessions with two events in the morning and a break for the afternoon then events in the evening.

“The pentathlon just wipes you out because it’s five events in a day, finishing with the 800 metres. It’s pretty tough.

“It does go really quick, but by the end of it you’re really tired and you have red eyes. Competing indoors it’s quite dry so it’s pretty tiring.”

Ennis will begin with the 60 metres hurdles before moving through the high jump, shot put, long jump and finishing with the 800 metres.

After performing well in warm up events Ennis will be keen to get off to good start in the opening event.

Her new personal best time of 7.87 seconds in the 60m hurdles at the Birmingham Grand Prix on February 18 is still the fastest sea level time of 2012, with only the 7.84 set by Kristi Castlin at altitude being quicker.

Ennis said it was just reward for hard winter training sessions with coach Toni Minichiello and that even she was surprised at improving by so much in one of her stronger events: “Training has been going well. I do feel good and happy with the way everything has gone.

“Now I don’t expect to be doing massive PBs. It’s not like when I was younger and putting 300 points on my PB.

“Because we’d been working on it so much in training on my block starts and attacking that first hurdle you have to have a reward for it.

“Then when you do perform and your time comes down you realise all the work was worth it.”