Aussie Head Coach, Leigh Nugent, To Step Down

CANBERRA, Australia, November 12. LEIGH Nugent, Head Coach of the Australian National Swim Team, has decided to step down from the position, according to the Chineser news agency, Xinhuanet.

Sydney coach Alan Thompson, who is seen as a strong contender for the position, will be interviewed today for the role.

Nugent led Australians to achieve their best overseas Olympic results at the Athens Games in August. The team earned 15 medals, including seven gold medals.

Nugent, who took over the job earlier this year, returned recently from a holiday in Italy and confirmed hints he'd dropped earlier, announcing that he would step down as Head Coach but would be willing to reassume his old role as National Youth Coach.

A number of Australian swimmers have changed their coaches since the Athens Olympics. Leisel Jones, world record holder, and Geoff Huegill have cut ties with 75-year-old Ken Wood. On Wednesday, Jones started training with Stephan Widmer, who coached Libby Lenton to a world 100m freestyle record earlier thisyear.

Brisbane-based Olympic gold medallists Jodie Henry and Alice Mills are also preparing to move south if their coach, Shannon Rollason, is hired at the AIS in Canberra. Rollason was interviewed for the job this week.

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