Champion Cohen pulls plug on rowing career

TIME TO GO: Nathan Cohen is retiring.
TIME TO GO: Nathan Cohen is retiring.

Olympic champion Nathan Cohen has retired from rowing.

In an interview with The Southland Times yesterday, the 27-year-old Southlander said he had called time on his rowing career and would not be trying to push for another Olympic gold medal in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Cohen become a national hero in August last year when he teamed up with Joseph Sullivan to produce a remarkable finish to win gold in the men's double sculls at the London Olympics.

This added to the world championship titles Cohen had won in 2010 and 2011.

The James Hargest College product said yesterday that after a few months of deliberating, he had come to the decision that now was the right time to move on.

"It's been an interesting few months when you go around in circles a little bit, but I'm happy to finally make a decision and move on.

"Obviously rowing is everything I've known for the past 14 years. You put your whole life into it so it's always going to be a difficult time. But I've had great advice from people around me that have been there before and I've finally been able to get to the stage where I can realise that it's been an awesome experience but at the same time I'm ready to move on."

Cohen took a break from the sport this year because of an irregular heartbeat. He said that was not the reason he decided to retire from the sport but it did prompt him to do some thinking.

"It's not the reason I'm retiring but it was the break that gave me time to stop and think, which is probably the first time I've done that since I started the sport."

He will step away from rowing and on January 20 step into his new job with the Bank of New Zealand in the commercial department in Waikato.

As a result of Cohen's stellar career in 2012, he was named The Southland Times inaugural Southlander of Year, Southland Sportsperson of the Year and he was also honoured with a New Zealand Order of Merit.


The Southland Times