Multi-Olympic medalist Aliaksandra Herasimenia has announced her retirement from competitive swimming at the age of 33. The sprinter from Belarus revealed her intention at a press conference held at the National Olympic Committee of her nation today, August 7th.
“I wanted to qualify for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, but let me be frank – I am not ready to win a medal today. So I would like to announce that I am retiring from swimming. However, I will not abandon the sport. I have my own swimming club and I will do my best to share my experience with children,” Herasimenia said. (Belarus News)
Herasimenia specialized in the 50m and 100m freestyle events, winning 2 silver medals at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. She finished behind the Netherlands’ Ranomi Kromowidjojo in both races with her 100m free time of 53.38 remaining as the Belarusian National Record in the event.
Herasimenia followed up her Olympic campaign with a bronze in the 50 free at the 2016 Games in Rio, producing a time of 24.11 to lower her own NR in that event. That mark remains today as well. She also owns the Belarusian LCM records in the 50m back (27.23) and 50m fly (25.84).
On the World Championships scene, Herasimenia claimed the 100m free title in 2011.
In 2003, at the age of 17, Herasimenia was banned for two years for a positive test for norandosterone. Retired swimmer Fran Halsall of Great Britain finished 4th behind Herasimenia by just .02 in Rio and was very vocal about missing out on a medal to someone who had previously tested positive for a banned substance. You can read more about that here.
Herasimenia married fellow Belarusian swimmer Yauhen Tsurkin in 2017 and the couple welcomed a baby daughter, Sofia, in September 2018. Tsurkin is competing at the World Cup in Jinan, China this week.