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Melissa Bishop-Nriagu joins coaching staff at University of Windsor

Bishop-Nriagu, who hopes to represent Canada at her third Olympic Games in 2020, takes on a new role as assistant distance coach in the wake of cross-country coach Gary Malloy's recent passing

The University of Windsor has announced that two-time Olympian, World Championship medallist and Canadian 800m record-holder Melissa Bishop-Nriagu has joined its Lancers coaching staff as Assistant Distance Coach.

Bishop-Nriagu’s appointment comes in the wake of head cross-country coach Gary Malloy’s sudden death in May. According to a report in the Windsor Star, head track and field coach Colin Inglis had taken on cross-country coaching duties in the meantime, and was happy to welcome Bishop-Nriagu, who helped the program to three national titles during her days as a Lancer. (She received her bachelor’s degree in kinesiology in 2010, and her B.Ed 2011.) She will be working with both the cross-country and track teams.

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Melissa Bishop
Melissa Bishop at the 2017 World Championships. Photo: Claus Andersen/Athletics Canada

“I’m excited,” Bishop-Nriagu told the Star. “I think it’s going to be different because I haven’t been in this role yet, but it’s something I’ve always wanted to do. I’m really excited to be back.”

Bishop-Nriagu received the Banner Shield as the Lancers’ female athlete of the year in 2010, when she won gold in the 600m, 1000m and 4x800m at the Canadian national championships. She competed for Canada at the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games, finishing fourth in the 800m in Rio.

Melissa Bishop-Nriagu with her daughter, Corinne. Photo: Maxine Gravina

Bishop-Nriagu returned to competition this year for the first time since her daughter Corinne’s birth in July 2018. She kicked off 2019 with a 1,500m personal best at the Johnny Loaring Classic in Windsor, and went on to win the 800m at the Guelph Inferno in June in a meet record of 2:01.01. She finished second at the Canadian Track Nationals in Montreal in July. Bishop-Nriagu was hoping to achieve world championship standard (2:00.60), but shut down her season last weekend after developing an injury to her Achilles tendon. Her goal is to once again represent Canada at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

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