Gareth Kean to take break from swimming

Last updated 15:28 02/04/2014

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Wellington backstroke swimmer Gareth Kean has decided to take an indefinite break from the sport.

The 22 year old has pulled out of next week's New Zealand championships in Auckland and made himself unavailable for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in July.

Kean, who won a silver medal at the Delhi Commonwealth Games, said he needed a break after a decade of training and racing.

"I just don't have the passion that it takes to be the best I can be right now," Kean said. 

"I believe I could qualify for Glasgow but I do not want to go there to make up the numbers. If I am not in the sort of shape to win a gold medal, then I am not doing justice to myself, my family and to the public of New Zealand really. And right now I am struggling to make that commitment."

Kean said he will make a decision next year on whether he will return to the pool and have a shot at qualifying for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Swimming New Zealand and Kean's personal coach Gary Hurring said they understood the decision but hoped he would return to the sport.

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- Fairfax Media

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