Leisel Jones not in London for holiday - coach

07:04, Jul 25 2012
Leisel Jones
SAGA: Leisel Jones is set to become the only Australian swimmer to appear at four Olympic Games.

Leisel Jones' coach, Michael Bohl, has vehemently rejected suggestions she was treating the Olympics as anything other than serious competition, and says she has been performing well in training and is in good condition to compete next week.

Jones has repeatedly said these Games were the icing on the cake for her, having created history by becoming the first Australian swimmer to qualify for four Olympics.

Some feel that Jones is not in the best shape and is treating London as a farewell tour, not taking it as seriously as she had the previous three Games, where she won a total of eight medals.

''She's competitive. She wants results,'' Bohl said. ''She's looking OK. She has got to get back down to her best [times] and if she's not down to her best she's not going to be competitive here.

''She's a very good competitor and she's really got to get every inch out of herself if she's going to be competitive here. The rest of the world has really moved up. She's really got to put together a great race to be competitive, and has to drop a couple of seconds to get herself in the game.

''She's in pretty good condition. You can only really go off the time trials and what she's doing here. She went one minute 08.3 seconds [in the 100-metre breaststroke] in Manchester in a pair of nylons, which is one of the best ever times in training.

''She's a different sort of athlete. She's not a 14 or 15-year-old girl who is doing 10 really hard sessions a week. She's probably at the end of her swimming career. She's been doing nine sessions a week, and two gym sessions a week coming into this, and we were really happy with her from coming off Santa Clara [in California, where she swam faster than she did at Olympic trials].''

Bohl was asked his thoughts on suggestions it was nothing more than a farewell tour.

''She has won eight Olympic medals and has a great track record of doing well. She was an Olympic medallist at 14. She has done well to last as long as she has in the sport.''


Sydney Morning Herald