LOUTH’S Kate Haywood has admitted her swimming career is over after disappointment at the London 2012 Olympics – revealing she’s sick of the sight of swimming pools.
The 25-year-old came a distant last in her 100m breaststroke heat at the Aquatics Centre on Sunday morning, touching home last in 1:09.22 minutes in her second Olympic appearance.
Twenty-five-year-old Haywood was part of the 4x100m medley quartet that finished fourth at Beijing 2008 but after British youngster Siobhan-Marie O’Connor went quicker in the heats on Sunday, it was unlikely the former Louth Dolphins ace would get another relay chance in London on Friday morning.
A debilitating hip injury in 2009 almost prompted retirement three years ago but while a move to train in Melbourne, Australia in 2010 seemed to breathe new life into Haywood, she confirmed she is now hanging up her swimming cap and goggles for good.
“I am really disappointed, I thought I was going to be better than that because I have been doing a lot of work out in Australia and changing a few things,” said Haywood.
“It has all been going really well, I don’t know what happened really.
“I wasn’t the fastest Brit so it is unlikely that I will get a relay swim and that’s it, finally hang up the goggles and move on now.
“I am just looking forward to the next chapter in my life now, I have been doing this for ten years and I have achieved a lot in that time.
“I have not got an Olympic medal but not many people get those so I am happy but disappointed with the swim in the 100m.”
While Haywood’s career ends without an Olympic medal, she has amassed quite the cluttered trophy cabinet since she competed at her first major senior competition at the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester.
As well as five Commonwealth Games medals, Haywood has collected two European relay golds and individual silvers and as a result, she believes she can bring the curtain down on her career with her head held high.
She added: “I started out at 15 and I can definitely look back with a lot of pride.
“I am 25 now and people say that that is young but ten years is a long time to be getting up every morning and jumping into a cold swimming pool and getting wet.
“So I am really looking forward to just stopping. I haven’t really thought about what I will do though, I wanted to come to London first and do this and then start thinking.”
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