London 2012: Paralympic swimmer Dave Roberts could retire after missing out
- 10 April 2012
- From the section Wales
For 11-time gold medal winning Paralympic swimmer Dave Roberts missing out on London 2012 is a blow, but he feared it was coming.
Roberts, 31, failed to hit qualifying standards over the weekend ahead of the Team GB squad announcement on Tuesday.
He has now been left out of the squad, leaving him one gold short of becoming Britain's most successful Paralympian.
After falling short of the qualifying time, he had already admitted he was thinking of retiring.
"I don't really see much point in carrying on," Roberts said before selectors confirmed that he would miss out on London.
"I've been doing this a long time and maybe my body is telling me it's time to take stock of what I've done.
"I've won 11 golds, no-one can take that away from me. Swimmers here would kill to have the career I've had."
Selectors could still have chosen him for the squad if they believed he could challenge for a medal, but his omission means he remains tied on 11 golds with Baroness Tanni-Grey Thompson.
The Pontypridd-born Paralympian was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at the age of 11.
A member of Caerphilly County Swim Squad, he was encouraged to start swimming as part of his physical therapy when diagnosed.
Nine years later, at the age of 20, he won seven medals at the 2000 Sydney games, including three gold.
A further eight golds were won in Athens in 2004 and at the Beijing games in 2008.
His success in 2008 saw him chosen to carry the Team GB flag during the closing ceremony.
Roberts, who also boasts eight World Championship medals, was awarded a CBE in 2009.
He had been hoping to go to his fourth games in London, but those dreams were dashed when he competed at the British Disability Swimming Championships in Sheffield last Saturday.
He failed to hit the 29.29s qualifying time in the men's 50 metre freestyle, clocking 29.77.
His final attempt at qualification came in Saturday's 100 metre freestyle, but a time of 1:05.38 left him over two seconds from the qualifying standard.
Roberts entered competition over the weekend after just three weeks of training as a result of illness and injury.
He tore a tricep muscle late last year and contracted pneumonia while on a training camp in South Africa earlier this year.
Huw Jones, chief executive of Sport Wales, the body that drives elite sporting performance, said: "I think it is a big disappointment, I think particularly for David.
"He's been so successful winning 11 gold medals, the same number as Tanni Grey-Thompson over the years, and he's not going to get an opportunity to break that record at the Paralympic Games in London.
"He has had enormous difficulties, both physical difficulties and things with injuries, and illness recently in terms of pneumonia, so it's no surprise really that he's struggled to make those times and qualify."