Having battled an extensive shoulder injury that required surgery in 2015, Australian speedster James Magnussen has struggled to return to form since his back-to-back World Championship title-winning days. The 2011 and 2013 100m freestyle gold medalist at Worlds and silver medalist at the 2012 Olympic Games, Magnussen sat out the 2015 and 2017 World Championships, so the recent Commonwealth Games served as the 26-year-old’s biggest international debut in several years.
Finishing 4th in the 100m at his nation’s qualifying Trials, Magnussen was left off the roster in his pet event individually, but made the Commonwealth squad in the 50m freestyle, as well as the 4x100m freestyle relay. At the Games, Maggie helped the Australians win the relay with a speedy leg of 48.09, but had to settle for 6th in the splash n’ dash with an ordinary 22.05.
So, what’s next for the green and gold national team mainstay? Possibly a break a lá the one Cate Campbell took post-Rio that rendered the superstar in a much better spot both emotionally and physically as evidenced by her Gold Coast performances. Sister Bronte Campbell is now headed on to a sabbatical of her own, with the hopes of repairing a broken down body in time to do some damage at the Tokyo 2020 Games.
“You should never make big decisions when you are emotional. I will take a bit of time away and have a think about things and see what happens.” Retirement is reportedly not entirely off the table.
If he were to take a break in order to make a possible final Olympic run, Maggie would at least be taking leave on a high note, as the Aussies up-ended the overall medal table, winning 73 medals overall, including 28 golds.
“It’s been a pretty dominant week from the team in the pool, I have been happy to be a part of that,” Magnussen told the AAP.