The Caeleb Dressl World Swimming Championships ended with just two gold medals from Budapest.
USA Swimming withdrew its star swimmer from the rest of the competition on Wednesday for unknown reasons.
“He is not fit to compete at the moment. And so we just had to decide. The decision had to be quick, “US team leader Lindsay Mintenko told reporters.
Mintenko said she could not be more precise about the reasons for Dressel’s withdrawal, but that he might decide to talk about it himself. She did not want to say whether it was a mental or physical problem. Dressel looked in good shape.
He withdrew from Tuesday’s semi-final in the 100 free and it was not yet clear at the time whether he would be able to continue. He later also had to race in the 50 freestyle and 100 butterflies.
“It simply came to our notice then. And so it was a quick decision that we made together with him and our medical staff and coaches, “said Mintenko. “This is the right decision, especially for Caeleb’s long-term health. And that is, after all, what we are here for, for the health of our athletes. ”
For 25-year-old Dressel – a seven-time Olympic gold medalist – this is a big blow.
“Caeleb went to great lengths to do that,” Mintenko said. “Whenever you come to a world championship or some big competition, an international competition, and if you can’t compete, it’s very difficult. And so we will take it one day at a time. We have a wonderful team here with us. We are doing extremely well and look forward to the next few days. ”
Dressel’s teammates responded on Tuesday, adding three more gold medals to bring the team’s total to 10. He won gold in the 50-butterfly on Sunday, a day after the U.S. helped win the men’s 4 × 100 freestyle relay.
“It’s good to get the first individual (gold) out of the way,” said Dressel, who didn’t know this would be his last in this competition.
Also on Wednesday, Australian swimmer Shayna Jack broke her arm in training and will miss the rest of the worlds.
At the time, she was warming up for the morning 100-meter free run.
The 23-year-old Jack helped Australia to gold in the women’s 4×100 relay on Saturday and to silver in the 4×100 medley relay on Tuesday.
Hong Kong’s Siobhán Haughey, the winner of the Olympic silver medal in the 100th, also resigned on Monday due to an ankle injury.
Australian Mollie O’Callaghan was the fastest in the 100 qualifiers in their absence, followed by Canadian Penny Oleksiak, US Torri Huske and world record holder Sarah Sjöström.
Four-time Olympic medalist Chad Le Clos withdrew from the men’s competition on Monday. The South African said on social media that he had been struggling with his breathing for the past three weeks, “since he had multiple bronchitis”.
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