Neda Vanovac August 17, 2012
Eamon Sullivan says the Australian swimming team did not respond well to the presure in London. Photo: Steve Christo
Australia's Olympic swimmers have been asked to take part in an inquiry into the country's performance in London, as well as admitting they underestimated the pressure the Games would bring.
Relay gold medallist Cate Campbell said Swimming Australia approached the team for consultations after the squad delivered its lowest medal count in 20 years.
''They're going to try to get as many athletes as possible so they can get a feel for what athletes want, what needs to be changed or kept the same,'' she said.
Swimming Australia announced an inquiry last week, to be led by coach Bill Sweetenham and former swimmer Susie O'Neill, who has said current swimmers do not have the work ethic of generations past.
Three-time Olympian Eamon Sullivan said the team was taken aback by the intensity of the London experience.
''As much as you think you're ready for it, the difference between world championships and the Olympics is 100 times more pressure,'' Sullivan said yesterday. ''We under-prepared for the expectations of the pressure and the experience of the Olympics.
''Unfortunately, it's a bad time to learn lessons.
''But for the next Olympics, if it's the same team, it'll be a different result.''
Suggestions have been made that Australia should consider changing its training model to something similar to the USA's, which holds its Olympic trials a month before the Games.
Australia's trials are conducted three months before the Games, and Campbell thinks it works.
''I love having trials and then three months to improve,'' she said.
''The only thing I'd add is more competitions between trials and the Games where you can have race practice, which you can't replicate in training.''
Sullivan says different training regimes work for different countries.
''It works for them. For us to make a decision like that just because we've had one bad performance - and it wasn't bad, a lot of people swam personal bests - it's just that others were a lot faster,'' he said.
Emily Seebohm, who won one gold and two silver medals in London, said she didn't think she could compete in trials and go to a major meet a month later as the Americans do.
''For me, this works - from my trials to the Olympics, I dropped a second off my time, which is more than I did [previously], so I don't see why I would change,'' she said. AAP