Chad Le Clos. Picture: STEVE HAAG/GALLO IMAGES
Chad Le Clos. Picture: STEVE HAAG/GALLO IMAGES

South African swimming champion Chad le Clos has named Italian Andrea di Nino as his new coach.

Le Clos‚ who fired long-time mentor Graham Hill after the Olympics last year‚ said Australian swimmer Bob Hurley would work day-to-day with him and his Chad Le Clos Academy swimmers at Cape Town’s Jan van Riebeeck High School, where he is based.

"I’m excited to be working with Andrea‚" former Durbanite Le Clos said on his website on Friday. "His coaching record is second to none and I look forward to our journey together. I need to continue to improve to achieve my goals in swimming‚ and Andrea is the perfect person to coach me in this next stage of my career."

Di Nino has enjoyed Olympic success with Serbian Milorad Cavic and Russian Evgeny Korotyshkin‚ both 100m butterfly silver medallists four years apart. Korotyshkin shared silver with Le Clos at the 2012 Games in London‚ while Cavic lost to American star Michael Phelps by one-hundredth of a second in a controversial finish at Beijing 2008.

"I am delighted to be coaching Chad, and think that together we can achieve great things‚" said Di Nino. "He has already had a lot of success‚ but I see his talent‚ drive and ambition to do more‚ and I cannot wait to get started."

Le Clos‚ SA’s most decorated Olympian with four medals from two Games‚ also spoke highly of Hurley‚ a former world short-course champion in the 50m backstroke and 4x200m freestyle relay.

"Bobby is a phenomenal athlete in his own right and I’m so pleased that he has chosen to join my team alongside Andrea. Bobby’s drive and work ethic matches my own‚ so I’m sure our team will produce the results we’re looking for."

Said Hurley: "I can’t wait to start working with Chad and the other talented swimmers who will be based in Cape Town. As I take a break from training to recover from injuries‚ I look forward to learning more about the sport from a great mind like Andrea‚ and sharing my knowledge and experience with Chad‚ and the next generation of swimmers in South Africa."

Le Clos‚ after winning the 200m butterfly gold and 100m ’fly silver at London 2012‚ had a disappointing gala at Rio 2016‚ winning silvers in the 100m fly and 200m freestyle‚ but finishing fourth in the 200m ’fly.

TMG Digital

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