Five-time Olympic gold medallist Ian Thorpe is frightened that he will fail on his return to swimming at London 2012.
The Australian, 29, makes a competitive return to swimming next month after five years away from the sport. Thorpe said: “I’m more concerned about not being really successful because that’s what I’m not prepared for. I’m more comfortable knowing that, chances are, I’m going to fail at this. I’ve become comfortable with that.”
After winning two golds at the Athens Olympics in 2004, Thorpe took a year away from the sport before announcing his retirement in 2006. He is now preparing to return to competition with the Australian squad at the Singapore World Cup meet on 4-5 November, with further meets in Beijing and Tokyo to follow.
Thorpe faces a huge challenge if he is to return to the gold medal-winning days of the last decade. American Michael Phelps has dominated the sport since 2004, winning 14 Olympic gold medals in that period, including a record eight in Beijing 2008.