Russian swimming great Popov retires - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Russian swimming great Popov retires

23/12/2004 11:25:23 PM Comments (0)

Four-time Olympic gold medallist Alexander Popov of Russia has retired from swimming, French sports daily L'Equipe reported on Thursday.

Popov, 33, made the decision after consulting with his coach and family upon returning home from the Athens Olympics in August, which he left without a medal, L'Equipe reported.

A retirement ceremony is being planned in Switzerland, where Popov has resided for the past two years, L'Equipe said.

The newspaper cited an unidentified source in Volgograd, Russia, where Popov trained early in his career, for its information.

The four-time Russian Olympian won the 50-metre and 100-metre freestyle at the 1992 Barcelona Games and in Atlanta in 1996, after which he was stabbed in the stomach in Moscow, nearly ending his career.

He earned a silver at the 2000 Games in Sydney.

Popov, who also won six events at the world championships, didn't make it out of the 50 freestyle preliminaries and was eliminated in the 100 freestyle semifinals in Athens.

After winning the 50 free at the European Championships in Madrid in May, Popov had hinted that the 2004 Games might be his finale.

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