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London golden girl Brittany Elmslie withdraws from FINA World Championships

15 June 2015

Swimming Australia media release

Olympic gold medallist Brittany Elmslie has officially withdrawn from the Australian Dolphins Swim Team for this year’s FINA World Championships in Kazan (RUS) after undergoing surgery to a remove a benign growth in her breast three weeks ago.

Elmslie, who turns 21 next Friday, has chosen to withdraw from the team after the operation and the recovery caused her to miss vital training time in the last month.

The Brisbane based freestyler was selected to race the 4x100 and 4x200m freestyle relays in Russia (2–9 August) but after discussions with her coach at St Peters Western Podium Centre, Michael Bohl and Swimming Australia, a relieved Elmslie believed it was in her and the team’s best interest to withdraw from the team.

Elmslie informed Swimming Australia of her decision on Friday.

“I’m disappointed not to be able to be in Kazan and be part of another successful Dolphins team but I know I am not ready to give my best for the team and that wouldn’t be fair on either myself or the team,” said Elmslie.

“I haven’t been able to put in the training that’s required to compete at that level and after a lot of thought I have decided that I am best to work through my health issues here in Australia and begin my preparation for the Olympic Trials (April 2016 in Adelaide) now.

“Swimming Australia and the people in my personal support group have been great in the last few weeks and I want to be able to repay their faith by being in the best shape possible in 2016.

“I am meeting with National Head Coach Jacco Verhaeren and support staff this week to map out the next 12 months.”

Verhaeren spoke on behalf of the Australian Dolphins Team and Swimming Australia when he said: “We are obviously supportive of Brittany’s decision and everyone on the team wishes Brittany the speediest of recoveries.

“It certainly came as a shock to us all but thankful that she will make a full recovery.

“Brittany is a great girl and a brilliant athlete and a key member of our team but at this stage of her life it is paramount that Brittany takes as much time to recover as she needs.

“I will meet with her on Monday to see how she is faring and to plot the next steps for her career.

“But knowing she will be fine is a huge relief for Brittany, her family and all of us in her swimming family.”

Verhaeren will also decide whether he needs to replace Elmslie from outside the team and will make that call as soon as possible.

Elmslie was one of Australia’s most successful swimmers in London, 2012 – also winning silver in the 4x200m freestyle and 4x100m medley to go with her 4x100m freestyle gold.

She also won silver in the 4x100m freestyle and 4x200m freestyle at the 2013 FINA World Championships in Barcelona and two gold (4x100m freestyle and 4x200m freestyle) in Glasgow at last year’s Commonwealth Games and gold in the 4x100 freestyle and silver in the 4x 200m freestyle at last year’s Hancock Prospecting Pan Pacific Championships on the Gold Coast.

Elmslie is the second member of the Dolphins team to withdraw from the team following dual World Champion James Magnussen’s withdrawal last month and his subsequent successful shoulder surgery.

The Dolphins will head to Townsville this week for their second domestic Grand Prix Meet (19-20 June) before leaving for their pre-World Championship training camp in Doha, Qatar on July 18 and into Kazan on July 29.

The eight-day Pool competition runs from August 2-9 and will be televised live on the Seven Network.

Last updated
15 June 2015