VIENNA, Austria, September 21. BUTTERFLY specialist Dinko Jukic has decided to retire from swimming instead of serve a 10-month suspension handed down by the Austrian swimming federation over disputes between the organization and one of its star swimmers.
Jukic, 23 years old, was Austria's top performer at the 2012 Olympics, finishing fourth in the 200 butterfly, his highest finish in a world or Olympic final. Despite the successful accomplishment, Jukic had the weight of a months-long dispute with Austrian Swimming hanging over him. After the European championships, Jukic and federation officials argued over Jukic's training, and the federation claimed Jukic insulted several Austrian officials over the dispute. The federation had voted to hand him a suspension of at least 10 months, but in a gesture of seemingly goodwill, the federation decided to wait until after the Olympics to hand out the suspension.
The ruling — voted 101-10 in favor of the suspension according to the Austrian news site Kurier — would still have given Jukic the opportunity to swim at the 2013 world championships. The pool swimming portion of those championships does not start until July 28, 2013.
In addition to news of his retirement, it appears that Jukic will sue the Austrian swimming federation over the suspension, though no details were available on the specific damages Jukic is seeking.
Jukic's recent troubles also included a battle with the National Doping Agency of Austria in 2011 over his refusal to take an out-of-competition drug test in May 2011, citing unclean conditions. The NDAA acquitted Jukic of any wrongdoing, citing him with a warning.
Jukic is the younger brother of Mirna Jukic, who retired in 2010 after winning Olympic bronze in the 100 breast in 2008.
Full text of Kurier article (in German)