Max Litchfield puts focus on Tokyo by withdrawing from Commonwealth Games

Max Litchfield in action during his record-breaking swim at the world championships in Budapest last year (Picture: AP)

Yorkshire’s Max Litchfield has withdrawn from the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast of Australia to focus on rehabilitating a shoulder injury.

The 22-year-old from Pontefract, who swims for City of Sheffield, was one of the favourites for a medal in the individual medley events after three fourth-place finishes in world level races over the last two years. But on the eve of the British Championships which begin in Edinburgh on Thursday, Litchfield has opted to pull out of April’s Games.

I’m disappointed not to be attending the Commonwealth Games, but at the moment my focus has to be on my shoulder rehabilitation and looking ahead to Tokyo in two years’ time,

Max Litchfield

“I’m disappointed not to be attending the Commonwealth Games, but at the moment my focus has to be on my shoulder rehabilitation and looking ahead to Tokyo in two years’ time,” he said.

“I would like to thank everyone at my club and within the British Swimming and Swim England set-up who have been supporting me during this time and wish the team the best of luck on the Gold Coast.”

Swimming team leader Grant Robins said: “Max has been receiving regular physiotherapy in the hope that he would be able to compete at the Commonwealth Games, but unfortunately medical advice is that he does not take part.

“Although this is sad news for the team, this is the best option for Max and his long term future in swimming and we wish him well in his ongoing recovery.”

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