Give us a break: Cotterell - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Give us a break: Cotterell

By Tom Wald 23/07/2004 04:43:05 PM Comments (0)

Grant Hackett's coach says Australian Swimming is not showing the nation's top swimmers enough respect.

Mentor Denis Cotterell is fuming over the decision to hold next year's Australian nationals in March before July's world titles in Montreal.

Cotterell says the scheduling has forced 1500m supremo Hackett to skip October's world shortcourse championships to fit in his first "decent" break in eight years.

"There is no real respect for their efforts over those four years, that some of them should have a break," Cotterell said from the Gold Coast.

"We have been breaking down our best swimmers for the last six years and demanding of them at every meet.

"They have backed up, the Americans don't do that, they can select meets once they have made teams and we have a smaller body of people to rely on, and they have to keep on lining up year after year.

"Some need a quadrennial break."

Hackett, the overwhelming favourite in the 1500m at next month's Olympics, is estimated to have swum more than 13,000 kilometres in training since his triumph at the Sydney Games.

The Queenslander plans to have a two-month break after Athens.

"He virtually hasn't had any decent time off in eight, nine years, not more than two or three weeks a year," Cotterell said.

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