Australians won’t endorse Missile Magnussen’s coachesOn 01/31/2019 by admin
The double world 100 metres freestyle champion, nicknamed ‘The Missile’, split from long-term coach Brant Best at the New South Wales Institute of Sport in September and linked up with Mitch and Lach Falvey at the Ravenswood club in Sydney instead.
“From the outset Swimming Australia has wanted what we believe is best for James to fulfil his potential and to be ready for next year’s world championships and the 2016 Olympics in Rio,” Swimming Australia’s high performance director Michael Scott said in a statement.
“We do not support the training environment James has chosen going forward. At the end of the day we respect James’s right to make his own decision although we haven’t got to agree with it.”
Magnussen’s funding is not affected and would be kept at the same level it had been under Best who guided the swimmer to his stunning victory at the 2011 world championships in Shanghai.
The 23-year-old retained his title in Barcelona last year but missed out on gold by a fingertip in the blue riband sprint at the 2012 Olympics in London.
Magnussen said he felt he needed a change when he split from Best, though local media reported last month he was in dispute about the decision with national head coach Jaco Verhaeren who guided Dutch swimmer Pieter van den Hoogenband to three Olympic gold medals, two of which were in the 100 freestyle.
“I sat with James and we talked through all of the options available to him in Australia where he could train in the lead up to next year’s world championships and onwards to the 2016 Rio Olympics,” Verhaeren said on Wednesday.
“After our meeting I left it with James to go away and think about his future and make a final decision, letting him know my door was always open for future discussion.”
(Writing by Greg Stutchbury in Wellington, editing by Tony Jimenez)