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Bahamian Williams-Darling to quit track and field

29 August 2008
www.world-track.org

Tonique Williams-Darling Tonique Williams-Darling
Bahamian quarter-miler, Tonique Williams-Darling, says she is retiring from track and field, less than a week after watching her reign as Olympic champion end in Beijing, China.

Williams-Darling has been absent from the track since September 2006 and several reports had suggested that she was on the verge of quitting the sports. The 32-year-old, however, played down those remarks in July, stating that she was eyeing a 2009 return.

But speaking to a local newspaper this week, the 2004 Athens Olympic gold medallist, confessed that she had been considering the decision for while.

"It has been several things," Williams-Darling explained in the Nassau Guardian. "Prior to just sitting down and watching the games for these last couple of weeks, there has been several things that had happened in the last two years that kind of signal to me that things were changing and moving in a different direction.

"First the separation from my coach who has been very instrumental in my career, moving to a different state with my husband (Dennis) as he begins his coaching career and with my pregnancy earlier in the year, those were the kind of things that had my career slow down right before the Olympics."

Williams-Darling, Bahamas only individual Olympic gold medallist, who also won a gold medal at the Helsinki World Championships in 2005, also admits to not miss competing, something that played a big part in her decision.

"Honestly to tell you the truth, I've watched the games for the last two weeks and I've been the biggest Bahamian supporter," she pointed out. "I've enjoyed watching everything and even though there is that excitement as an athlete, watching my friend and fellow Bahamians run I never had that itch to be back out there again.

"I think anytime someone with my caliber in the sport can sit down and watch it and not want to be out there, I think that it kind of signals that I am comfortable and I have accomplished all that I can accomplish in the sport and I am content with that."

The Bahamian says she does not completely write off the possibly of a return to the sport, but as for now, she will take the time to see the sights.

"There is always that small possibility and you never know what the future holds, but right now I have sight set on other stuff. I have been running for like 16-years now, from a Carifta athlete, so there are so many aspects of my life that I haven't been able to explore.

"There are lot of possibilities out there for Dennis and I now, so right now I think with the conclusion of the Olympics, we both have it out of our systems and right now we are ready to move onto other ventures."



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"First the separation from my coach who has been very instrumental in my career, moving to a different state with my husband (Dennis) as he begins his coaching career and with my pregnancy earlier in the year, those were the kind of things that had my career slow down right before the Olympics." " target="digg"> Digg


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