On Wednesday, the news broke that Australian National Team swimmer Kenrick Monk was hit by a car while riding his bike to practice. He even went so far as to give a statement to police saying that he thought he was specifically targeted, leading to gasps of sympathy around the swimming world as to who the evil man was that could have tried to kill him.
Teammates Ned McKendry, Stephanie Rice, and Nick D’Arcy were the first to arrive on the scene. During a tearful press conference, Monk would relieve the trio of any culpability by reinforcing that they only knew what he had told them, and had no first-hand knowledge of what actually happened.
Well, it turns out it wasn’t true. The Australian media is blowing up after Monk admitted at a press conference today that he made up the whole story, and that it was actually a fall from his skateboard that broke his elbow in two places and caused several other fractures.
Presumably, Monk was trying to avoid the wrath of coach Michael Bohl an injury suffered while riding a skateboard, which he probably was not supposed to be doing. Regardless, the injuries will have Monk out of training for a significant period of time, and his chances at a bid for the 2012 London Olympics is in huge jeopardy. Australian Trials are March 15-22 in Adelaide.
This is a huge blow for the Australian 800 free relay, that was counting on Monk as their 2nd-fastest swimmer 200 freestyler. This is going to really put the pressure on Ian Thorpe to swim the 200, at least for relay purposes, upon his return. By aggregate time, the loss of Monk costs them at least a second on that quartet.
As for Monk, there is the possibility that he could be charged with a crime for falsifying a police report over the issue. The maximum penalty in Australia is a one-year prison sentence, with the legal tests being:
1. A person knowingly causes a false report to be made to police
2. That false report causes the police to commence an investigation