Magnussen makes Rio squad for Australian 4x100m team

James Magnussen did not make the Australian Olympic squad initially, having failed to qualify for the individual events during the trials.
James Magnussen did not make the Australian Olympic squad initially, having failed to qualify for the individual events during the trials.

SYDNEY • Two-time world champion James Magnussen was yesterday added to the Australian swim team for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, securing a place in the men's 4x100m freestyle relay after initially being omitted.

The 25-year-old missed out on the 34-strong squad announced in April after he failed to finish in the top two places in his races at the Australian trials.

However, he and fellow London Olympian James Roberts, 25, were named along with Games debutant Matt Abood, 29, after Australia's spot in the relay event was confirmed when the qualification period ended on May 31.

Magnussen, who was pipped by just 0.01sec for the 100m freestyle gold medal in London, had shoulder surgery last year and said he was feeling stronger by the week in the lead-up to Rio.

He finished fourth in the 100m freestyle at the Australian trials behind Cameron McEvoy, Kyle Chalmers and Roberts. Abood finished fifth.

"I'm really looking forward to contributing to this relay team to the best of my ability," Magnussen said in a statement.

"I love swimming in relays and think this team have a lot of talent and potential."

Malaysia's Lee Chong Wei, who picked up a sixth Indonesia Open title on Sunday and is set to return to the top of the badminton world rankings, is also on the right track for the Rio Olympics.

However, his coach Hendrawan insists there is still work to be done. He said: "This win definitely puts Chong Wei on the right track in his preparation for the Olympics with two more months to go.

"But we still have to work on tactics, physical training and how to handle the pressure."

Lee, 33, lost the last two Olympic singles finals to China's Lin Dan.

Meanwhile, the National Basketball Association's (NBA) Most Valuable Player Stephen Curry has announced that he will not play in the Olympics, preferring to concentrate on his fitness.

"After a great deal of internal thought and several discussions with my family, the Warriors and my representatives, I've elected to withdraw my name from the list of eligible players on Team USA's preliminary roster," the 28-year-old Golden State star said in a statement.

Curry, who suffered a knee injury during the first round of the NBA play-offs, has never played in an Olympics.

REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 08, 2016, with the headline 'Magnussen makes Rio squad for Australian 4x100m team'. Print Edition | Subscribe